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Published January 11, 2010, 10:08 PM

Family's Fight Against Huntington's Disease

Imagine being only 36 years old and having to live in a nursing home or having to watch a love one slowly lose their ability to walk, think, talk or reason. A Fargo family is going through just that.

Imagine being only 36 years old and having to live in a nursing home or having to watch a love one slowly lose their ability to walk, think, talk or reason. A Fargo family is going through just that.

Chris Poyzer donated a check tonight to the Huntington's Disease Society of America in East Grand Forks. He raised more than 15 thousand dollars for research and awareness of the disease during a golf tournament last year. Chris' fight against Huntington's has become personal.

Chris says, “My wife has the disease. Her father also passed away this spring.”

Chris' wife Tania found out she had Huntington's Disease seven years ago. Now at 36 years of age Tania has to live in a nursing home.

Chris says, “We kept her at home as long as we could. We provided her with homecare and support, so she could be in her home for six years…to be around her dogs, to be sitting on the couch, but with her medical complications in the last three or four months, we knew it was pretty clear that she needed the support of a nursing home.”

Tania's father passed away this spring from Huntington's. The disease is an incurable genetic disorder. She's also had other family members with the disease.

“It's a progressive disease, so it's hard on families because it's hard to watch your loved one lose the ability to talk, to smile and what not,” says Chris.

However, Chris says through it all, he's been proud of his wife's strong spirit, and while she may get weaker, his love for her continues to get stronger.

“My wife is really resilient and never complains. She is very appreciative for what she has…not what she does not have,” says Chris.

Chris says he knows the money raised will probably not be soon enough to find a cure for his wife, but he hopes that it will help others with the disease.

The local Huntington's Disease Society of America meets every second Saturday of the month at 10 AM near the Altru cafeteria in Grand Forks.

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