Tony Hawk is grieving the loss of his mother. Nancy Hawk died Monday after a long battle with Alzheimer’s and dementia. Hawk shared the news along with her life story on Instagram with his fans. The former pro skateboarder shared he watched her mentally and physically slip away.
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My mom died peacefully this afternoon after a decade-long battle with Alzheimer’s and Dementia. We watched helplessly as she slid away – mentally and physically – in rapid decline over the last few years. With each visit it became less likely that there would be any signs of recognition. Instead of dwelling on the painful disease that took her away from us, I would like to honor her with acknowledgement of the successes in her life: She grew up during the Great Depression, had two jobs by age 14, married my father after he enlisted in the Navy during WW2, and managed to raise four kids on a meager budget while providing us with plenty of encouragement and confidence to follow our passions. She earned her doctorate in business management at an age that most would choose to retire from work altogether. She was a surrogate mom and a beacon of warmth to many of my misfit friends with weird hair and difficult backgrounds. She worried when I got hurt skating, but never discouraged me from doing it because she understood the unparalleled joy it brought me. She taught me to treat everyone equally, to embrace diversity and help those in need. She was constantly smiling, had a quick wit and made everyone around her feel special. She adored her grandchildren, and they adored her back. She knew the value of gathering people together, and often planned or hosted big parties for our extended friends and families. She touched many lives with her kindness and I believe she left the world a better place for countless others. My oldest sister recently found our mom’s “end of life” wishes from when she filled out the form in her cognitive days, and her last two answers resonate: “How do you want to be remembered by others?” Her response: “She was funny; adored life, friends, and family.” “Would you like any music, songs or readings at your memorial service?” Her response: “Hip Hop music might be nice.” So if you knew Nancy Hawk or just want to celebrate her life with us, please raise a glass and play your favorite hip hop tune in her honor. Thanks for everything mom, we love you and we are thankful for your guidance. Before I forget: fuck Alzheimer's, give to @hilarityforcharity