'Greatest Fear' | 

Fair City’s Una Crawford O'Brien fears getting Alzheimer's after husband’s diagnosis

Bryan, who plays Bob Charles on the RTE soap, has been living with the condition for the past three years and decided to go public with his diagnosis in the hopes of helping other people with the condition.

Bryan Murray and Una Crawford O'Brien

Neasa CumiskeySunday World

Fair City actor Una Crawford O'Brien has admitted that her “greatest fear” is being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease after her husband Bryan revealed he was living with the illness.

Bryan, who plays Bob Charles on the RTE soap, has been living with the condition for the past three years and decided to go public with his diagnosis in the hopes of helping other people with the condition.

He said that he wished he didn’t have Alzheimer’s but is learning to live with it and move forward.

However, Una, who is best known for playing Renee Phelan on Fair City, is fearful because this isn’t the first time she’s seen a loved one battle the devastating illness.

“The great thing about Bryan is he doesn't worry. I am the opposite, but what I try to do, and don't always succeed, is to live in the day, because if I think too far ahead, I panic," Una told the RTÉ Guide.

"I suppose my greatest fear is that because my mother and grandmother both had Alzheimer's, I would be terrified that I would get it, and so I can't think about that."

Una said that the past three years for the soap stars have been "very stressful”, adding that the pair are still navigating their new daily routines.

"There has been a huge change. I have to be the memory for the two of us, which can be very stressful,” she explained.

"The balance of life for us is different. You have to accept it because you can't do anything to change that balance.

"Every morning, Bryan asks me what we are doing that day and I let him know about any arrangements."

Bryan praised his partner and co-star for supporting him through his illness.

"Without her, I wouldn't be here," he said.

"She's such a bastion of support - you have no idea, she's been fantastic. Look, if she wasn't here, I don't know what state I'd be in.

"She's an incredible woman anyway, Alzheimer's or not."


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