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Annabel Bowlen announces Alzheimer’s diagnosis

Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen’s wife, Annabel, has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Denver Broncos Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Annabel Bowlen, the wife of Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen, has announced that she has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

“I recently learned that I’ve joined my husband Pat and the millions of others who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease,” Annabel Bowlen said in a press release from the Broncos. “Since Pat’s diagnosis, I have gained a vivid understanding of this disease’s progression and its effect on those living with it as well as their families. My family and I have been—and will remain—dedicated supporters of Alzheimer’s awareness, treatment and research funding.”

Her diagnosis comes nearly four years to the day that her husband stepped down from the team to engage in his own battle with the disease.

Rumors of Pat’s condition began circulating around 2010, but the formal announcement didn’t come until 2014. Annabel is taking a different approach with her own diagnosis.

“I decided to make my diagnosis public right away in the hope that it continues to raise awareness for those battling Alzheimer’s and their loved ones,” Annabel said. “With June also being Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month, the timing was right for me to share this personal update with everyone.”

As the Broncos have championed awareness of the disease since Pat Bowlen stepped down, Annabel intends to continue those efforts. Broncos fans across the country have stepped up in their own way over the years to raise awareness and funding for Alzheimer’s research. It’s an important battle for humanity to win.

“I feel that it is important for people to know that those in my situation do not need to completely withdraw from their daily activities,” Annabel said “Based on my own experience with Pat, there will still be many joyous and rewarding moments for me as well as my family and friends. I intend to proceed in life with the same strength, courage and endurance that Pat has shown in his battle with this disease. Like Pat, I know there will be good days and bad days ahead. I’m grateful to have the support of my family and especially my children—Patrick, Johnny, Brittany, Annabel and Christianna.

“It’s my hope to remain involved in various Alzheimer’s events as my health allows. And of course, I’ll be cheering on our Broncos. Most importantly, thank you to all of our incredible fans for the compassion and support you’ve given to me, Pat and our entire family.”

Our hearts go out to Annabel and the entire Bowlen family as she begins her own battle with this disease.