There is help

February 20, 2021

The best thing about our online world is the opportunity to visit our past world.

Reading the Cherokeean Herald online takes me back to some very happy days – my grandparents lived in Rusk.

My grandfather, Frank Stewart, passed away in the early 1970’s; my grandmother, Lillian Stewart (née Bowman) passed away in the mid-1980’s. She was a nurse at Nan Travis in Rusk; he worked for TxDOT building roads. Their children, my mother, Paula Stewart Finley, and her sister, Sue Stewart Starkey, both attended Rusk High School in the 1950’s.

As a child, I vividly remember spending time with my younger brother and two cousins at my grandparents’ 18 acres just out of town, on the way to Alto. I remember the town square, with Stewart Boot and Saddle (owned by my grandfather’s brother) and the old Cherokee movie house. I even remember going to Shattuck’s grocery.

At the age of 62, I’m fortunate to be able to remember all of this. Sadly, people living with Alzheimer’s are not so fortunate.

I work for the Alzheimer’s Association in Texas. Did you know that approximately 400,000 plus Texans are living with the disease? By 2025 that number is estimated to reach 490,000. Overall, 1 in 3 seniors dies with Alzheimer's or another dementia.

While there is still no cure for this disease, there is help. If you or someone you know needs it, please call our 24/7 free helpline to talk with someone at 800-272-3900. Much more information is available at

Scott Finley is Media Relations Manager for the Alzheimer’s Association® in Texas. He can be reached at