Glen Campbell’s wife, Kim Campbell, told the Tampa Bay Times on Monday that her husband’s Alzheimer’s disease has progressed to the point that he can’t play guitar and has lost most of his language skills.
“I don’t even know if he knows what (the guitar) is for,” she said. “But our children come and play for him. It’s hard to tell if he’s responding to it much. Sometimes he’ll listen and sometimes he’s distracted. He’s in his own world right now.”
Glen Campbell, who is known for songs including “Rhinestone Cowboy,” “Gentle on My Mind” and “Wichita Lineman,” was diagnosed with the degenerative brain disorder in summer 2011. He’s currently living in a Nashville memory care unit.
“Glen’s getting great care; he’s happy, he’s cheerful,” Kim Campbell said. “He’s healthy but … he doesn’t understand anything anyone is saying to him.”
Country group Restless Heart recently recorded Campbell’s “Wichita Lineman” as a tribute to the ailing singer. Restless Heart’s version of the song is available at digital retailers, and the group will perform “Wichita Lineman” on the Grand Ole Opry stage Tuesday.
“I hope it’s a fitting tribute to the one and only Glen Campbell,” said the group’s Dave Innis. “Glen has always been kind, supportive and encouraging to Restless Heart throughout our career. It’s positive influences like his that have inspired us and kept us going for 30-plus years.”