Rugby: Jones drama, dementia at just 41: “I’m terrified”

©Getty Images

Former Wales captain diagnosed with early-onset dementia

Former Welsh national rugby team captain Ryan Jones has revealed to the world that he has early-onset dementia, at just 41 years old. He was diagnosed with the disease after he began experiencing some symptoms in recent months. “I am terrified. I feel like my world is falling apart. And I’m really scared. Because I have three children and three stepchildren and I want to be a great dad. I’ve lived 15 years of my life as a superhero and I’m not. I don’t know what the future holds for me.”

“I just want to lead a happy, healthy and normal life, but I feel it has been taken away from me and there is nothing I can do. I can’t train anymore, I can’t referee, I don’t know what the rules of the game are anymore. People close to me were noticing changes in me. I was diagnosed with depression, and I began to realize that some of my cognitive functions were not exceptional. I began to see that my short-term memory was not good. I was forgetting things.”

Jones also commented on the fact that several former rugby players find themselves in a similar situation: “I was a kid who dreamed of playing for Wales. I was able to live that dream. I captained Wales more times than anyone else until Warburton came along and for nothing I would have changed it. It was great at the time, but I would change it today based on my current experience.”

You may also like...