Robert Irwin opens up about how dementia has impacted his family

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Robert Irwin has opened up about dealing with dementia in his family while appearing as a guest panellist on The Sunday Project.

When a story about Alzheimer’s and a possible new treatment was aired, the 19-year-old opened up about how the disease had touched his family.

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“I think there’s no one living who hasn’t encountered someone or has a loved one who’s experienced this, it’s very sad,” he said.

“I know my grandfather on my mum’s side had a form of dementia and a lot of family-friends have had that as well, and it’s just, it’s devastating (that) someone you love, someone you’re close too, you see going through that.

“Just not being able to relive and enjoy the moments they had, it’s heartbreaking.

“I guess it just reminds you, you gotta spend every second with the people you love and really surround yourself with love and light.”

Irwin also spoke about celebrating Steve Irwin Day, a commemoration of the conservation efforts his father spearheaded for so many years.

A gala dinner was held in Brisbane a week ago, where the teenager jumped on stage alongside his mum and the Wiggles for a special performance.

“My dad actually did a really fun sort of collaboration project with (the Wiggles) at Australia Zoo way back in the day, 20 years ago, so we’ve worked with them for a long time,” Irwin said.

“Dad set this up as a way to support wildlife conservation here in Australia and on the global stage and a night like that just makes us realise his legacy is alive and thriving.

“It’s the honour of a lifetime to keep that going.”

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