Michael J. Fox after living decades with Parkinson’s is not afraid of death

Michael J. Fox is a Canadian-American former actor who made a name for himself in the entertainment industry after starring in the successful saga “Back to the Future” or “Back to the future” (1985-1990) and the television series “Family Ties” (1982-1989); However, when he was at the height of his career, in 1991, he was diagnosed with early Parkinson’s and made his illness public in 1998.

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As the symptoms became more severe, he moved away from the world of acting, although he continued to work mainly as a voice actor in films such as “Stuart Little” and “Atlantis: the lost empire”, in addition to having minor roles in some television series.

Although he abandoned what he was most passionate about, he decided to move forward and become activist for the cure of said neurodegenerative disease, something that led him to create The Michael J. Fox Foundation. At par edited three books: “Lucky Man: A Memoir” (2002), “Always Looking Up: The Adventures of an Incurable Optimist” (2009), “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Future: Twists and Turns and Lessons Learned” (2010) and “No time like the future” (2021).

Precisely about his latest publication, the actor born on June 9, 1961, who has not hidden the Parkinson he suffers from, has decided to go further and refer to the evil he has lived with for three decades; Not only that, since he talked about death, which he said he was not afraid of.

When the former and now activist presented his book "There is no better time than the future". (Photo: Michael J. Fox/Instagram)
When the former and now activist presented his book “There is no better time than the future.” (Photo: Michael J. Fox/Instagram)

WHAT DID MICHAEL J. FOX SAY ABOUT DEATH?

Despite the difficult times he had to live through due to the disease, Michael J. Fox has always been positive and is sure that one day the cure for Parkinson’s will be discoveredthough he doubts it will be while he is still on this earth.

“As I wrote in my last book, I am now out of business. I’m very outspoken with people about cures and when they ask me if I’ll be free of Parkinson’s in my lifetime, I say, ‘I’m 60 and the science is hard. So no'”, he pointed out in November 2021 in an interview with , a nonprofit organization that empowers people to choose how they live as they age.

Regarding death, the actor of Marty McFly was forceful and pointed out that gratitude for everything he has experienced these years is paramount, for what is considered “a happy guy”.

“I don’t have a morbid thought in my head: ‘I’m not afraid of death. Absolutely’. But as I walked through that darkness, I was reminded of my father-in-law, who had passed away and always stood for gratitude, acceptance, and trust; and I began to notice things that I was grateful for (…). I came to the conclusion that gratitude makes optimism sustainable and if you think you have nothing to be grateful for, keep looking because you don’t just get optimism. You can’t wait for things to be great and then be thankful for it. You have to behave in a way that promotes that.”, he stated.

For this reason, he advised those with Parkinson’s to live calmly and happily, since you can live with the disease. “People sometimes say that a relative, a parent or a friend died of Parkinson’s. You don’t die of Parkinson’s, you die with Parkinson’s. Because once you have it, you have it for life, until we can remedy it and we are working hard to achieve it. So to live with that you need to exercise and eat well.”.

When Michael J. Fox attends the ceremony honoring Julianna Margulies with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, in Los Angeles, California, on May 1, 2015. (Photo: Valerie Macon / AFP)
When Michael J. Fox attends the ceremony honoring Julianna Margulies with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, in Los Angeles, California, on May 1, 2015. (Photo: Valerie Macon / AFP)

HOW WERE THE FIRST YEARS WITH PARKINSON’S?

Before retiring from acting, Michael J. Fox starred in the series “Spin City” (1996-2002), with which he won an Emmy Award and three Golden Globes. But during the fourth season, his illness did not allow him to continue and he had to resign in 2000. The actor said that at that time he suffered a lot and his illness was remarkable. “My character did not have Parkinson’s”, He said and assured that he could no longer pretend to cameras that he was someone completely healthy.

After leaving acting, he dedicated himself to his family and foundation, although he admits that at first everything was very difficult, but thanks to his wife Tracy Pollan he was able to get ahead. As he recalls, as soon as he was diagnosed with the disease, he did not want to accept it, so he decided not to make it public for seven years and while keeping his secret, he took refuge in alcohol. Fortunately, his partner did not leave him alone and helped him out of that hole.

What came later was accepting the Parkinson’s he suffered from and began to work on it, realizing that he had lived for a time in a world of egos, to which he said goodbye and began to value papers and smaller jobs. “30 years have passed and at this point I am more or less done with the disease. I have long since accepted that I do not have control over my body and I understood that the main thing was to gather adaptability and resilience”, told .

Michael J. Fox with his international lifetime achievement award during the presentation of the Goldene Kamera 2011 (Golden Camera Media Award) of the Axel Springer Verlag publishing house on February 5, 2010 in Berlin. (Photo: Pool / Tobias Schwarz / AFP)
Michael J. Fox with his international lifetime achievement award during the presentation of the Goldene Kamera 2011 (Golden Camera Media Award) of the Axel Springer Verlag publishing house on February 5, 2010 in Berlin. (Photo: Pool / Tobias Schwarz / AFP)

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Michael J. Fox after living decades with Parkinson’s is not afraid of death