PORTLAND -- The new NBC sitcom starring Michael J Fox is being praised by people who have learned to laugh through some of their own challenges with Parkinson’s disease.
“When you have this disease that’s the number one thing you’ve got to realize. There will be many funny moments and many serious ones but no matter what you have to keep on living,” said Brian Grant.
The Trail Blazer fan favorite got his diagnosis after more than 10 years in the NBA.
Al Williams of Portland got the same news two years ago, “It’s not a death sentence and Michael J. Fox is helping people realize that.”
Both men talk openly about the tremors produced by Parkinson’s. “I sometimes put my hand in my pocket so people can’t see it trembling but today I’m walking with it out so people can see,” said Grant.
“My tremors come and go depending on how much stress I’m feeling,” said Williams. ”When my wife is mad at me my hand shakes like crazy so I have to get out of trouble real fast.”
The silly side of the disease is showcased in “The Michael J. Fox Show.” He plays a former TV news anchor and father of three.
Some have questioned whether laughing about the disease is appropriate.
“I don’t think Michael J. Fox can do anything wrong in any of our eyes. He’s brought such awareness about the disease and he’s raised more than $300 million dollars for research,” Grant concluded.