Fair City actor Bryan Murray has confirmed that he has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.
The 73 year old actor was diagnosed three years earlier, however he only decided to go public recently. Murray revealed that he began to notice that something was wrong, after finding it harder to remember his lines like he used to.
“As a younger actor, I would get a script, it would be four pages and within 15 minutes I would know the lines", he said. "As I got older, I couldn't do that any longer".
Bryan Murray who plays Bob Charles in Fair City, has revealed that he will continue to work on the show for the forseeable future. Admitting that while it is not ideal, his diagnosis has not affected his acting ability so far.
"They really could have said, well if you can't learn your lines, you can't be in the show, but they did the exact opposite and that got rid of one of my biggest fears", Murray said.
The actor also praised the show's producer Brigie de Courcy for continuing to find ways to accomodate him on set.
"When it first started, my character would be looking at a laptop, reading a newspaper, or I might have had a clipboard, but it would be the script in front of me".
"So, even if your memory is gone down the pan, your ways of coping with it are still intact", he added. "I had no problem telling the people in Fair City my memory was shot, that after half an hour of reading a script, I had no recollection of it".
Bryan's wife Una Crawford another Fair City actor, revealed that she felt that something was not quite right with her husband when they were touring with a play together.
"I noticed Bryan's lines were difficult for him. He'd get irate if I were to say anything, so later, on holidays, I asked if he'd get his memory checked", she explained. "He had the tests and got the diagnosis".
"For Bryan, memory was his thing, and to have it taken away from you when you have been a professional actor for 52 years is upsetting. Yes, you can use tricks and all the rest of it, but when you can't remember, it's hard".
While he wishes he did not have it, Bryan Murray insists that it "wasn't the end of the world", and hopes his public announcement will help people who are in a similar sitiuation.
"I really wanted to let it be known this was my situation and that for anyone who's been recently diagnosed, there is an answer to it", he said. "It's not the end of the world. It's the changing of your world, but it's not the end".
"I wish I didn't have it, but I do have it, and I'm still here. I have it and I am working with it".