Michael J. Fox admits how tough his 30-year battle with Parkinson’s disease has gotten.
“I won’t be 80,” the 61-year-old “Back to the Future” star says in a preview of an upcoming episode of “CBS Sunday Morning.”
Journalist Jane Pauley tells Fox in the clip that she doesn’t “waste”, but that her illness will one day “come” when it’s time to go.
“Yes, it’s knocking on the door,” the “Family Ties” graduate responds.
“I won’t lie. It’s getting harder, it’s getting harder. It’s getting harder. It’s getting harder every day.”
Fox later explains that he had surgery to remove a benign tumor on his spine, but that the procedure “spoiled” his gait and therefore began to “break” other parts of his body, including his arm, elbow, face, and hand.
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He adds that the “big killer” of Parkinson’s disease is “falling down” and could be “breathing food and getting pneumonia,” noting that there are “all these subtle ways that catch you.”
“You don’t die from Parkinson’s. The “Spin City” alum concludes, “You die with Parkinson’s.” “So – so was I – I was thinking about the mortality of it.”
Fox was diagnosed with a brain disorder at the young age of 29. He has since become one of the leading advocates for research on the condition, even establishing the Michael J. Fox Foundation in 2000 to educate the public about the disease and fund disease-fighting work. .
Two years ago, the “Secret of My Success” star shared that she is not afraid of death.
“I’m really outspoken with people about treatments. When they ask me if I can get rid of Parkinson’s for the rest of my life, I say, ‘I’m 60 years old and science is hard.’ So, no,’ Fox said in an AARP magazine profile in December 2021.
“I am a really happy man. I don’t have a sick thought in my head – I’m not afraid of death. None.”
The full interview with Fox’s “CBS Sunday Morning” will air on April 30 at 9:00 ET.