Bruce Willis may be one of the most recognized actors of our time, but he’s sadly not the person he used to be.
Glenn Gordon Caron, a close friend and American writer associated with the ‘Die Hard’ actor, has expressed that the actor’s zest for life has diminished since his diagnosis of dementia.
Willis’ family initially disclosed his health challenges last year when they revealed his diagnosis of aphasia. In February 2023, they shared an update stating that it had progressed to frontotemporal dementia (FTD), which can result in behavior and language issues.
Willis has retired from acting and largely withdrawn from the public eye. However, Caron, the creator of the ’80s series ‘Moonlighting’, has emphasized that Willis is pleased that audiences can still enjoy his past performances.
As ‘Moonlighting’ is now available for streaming on Hulu, Caron shared with the New York Post: “I know he’s really happy that the show is going to be available for people, even though he can’t tell me that. When I got to spend time with him we talked about it, and I know he’s excited.”
Caron makes an effort to visit Willis every month or so, even though he acknowledged that he’s not always able to do so consistently. He is also friends with Willis’ wife, Emma Heming Willis, and his three older daughters.
“I have tried very hard to stay in his life. He’s an extraordinary person. The thing that makes [his disease] so mind-blowing is [that] if you’ve ever spent time with Bruce Willis, there is no one who had any more joie de vivre than he. He loved life and … just adored waking up every morning and trying to live life to its fullest.”
Caron further described Willis as an “amazing guy” and suggested that Willis still retains some recognition of him, even though he now sees life “through a screen door.”
He then revealed that Willis is not completely able to talk in the way he used to. “My sense is the first one to three minutes he knows who I am,” he explained. “He’s not totally verbal; he used to be a voracious reader — he didn’t want anyone to know that — and he’s not reading now. All those language skills are no longer available to him, and yet he’s still Bruce.”
Caron continued: “When you’re with him you know that he’s Bruce and you’re grateful that he’s there. The joie de vivre is gone.”
In the announcement of Willis’ disease progression earlier this year, his family expressed their gratitude for the support they’ve received and the care extended to him during this challenging time.
“We have been so moved by the love you have all shared for our dear husband, father, and friend during this difficult time,” the family stated. “Your continued compassion, understanding, and respect will enable us to help Bruce live as full a life as possible.”
We are sending our thoughts and prayers out to Bruce Willis, his family, his friends, and his fans.