3 Celebrities You Never Knew Suffered Brain Health Challenges

Some say it could be just old age, but chances are given how involved, bright, and active these stars' careers were, as well as how relatively young some of them still are, the evidence would seem to refute this theory...

Jack Nicholson

The word on the street is Jack Nicholson has retired from acting at the still young age of 76. Why?

Because he cannot remember his lines.

After a career spanning 50 years, the most nominated man in Oscar History has given up movies "without fanfare."

A Hollywood insider recently said: "There is a simple reason behind his decision — it is memory loss.

"Quite frankly, at 76, Jack has memory issues and can no longer remember the lines being asked of him."

Nicholson won Oscars for One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest in 1976, As Good As It Gets in 1998 and Best Supporting Actor for Terms of Endearment in 1983.

It's a sad, yet dignified end to a career that included Easy Rider with Dennis Hopper and playing The Joker in Batman.

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Charlton Heston

Charlton Heston was seen by the world as larger than life. He was known for his chiseled jaw, broad shoulders and resonating voice, and, of course, for the roles he played.

Yet, he was struck down by brain health challenges.

Heston lent his strong presence to some of the most acclaimed and successful films. "Ben-Hur" won 11 Academy Awards, tying it for the record with the more recent "Titanic" (1997) and "The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" (2003).

Heston's other box office successes include:"The Ten Commandments," "El Cid," "55 Days at Peking," "Planet of the Apes" and "Earthquake."

In June 1998, Heston was elected president of the National Rifle Association. He unabashedly posed for ads holding a rifle. He delivered a jab at then-President Clinton, saying,

"America doesn't trust you with our 21-year-old daughters, and we sure, Lord, don't trust you with our guns."

Heston stepped down as NRA president in April 2003, telling members his five years in office were "quite a ride. ... I loved every minute of it."

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Ronald Reagan

There's a heart wrenching story about President Ronald Reagan in the later years of his life.

Ronald Reagan

Unknown to many at the time, the President even while he was in office had brain health problems…

"Today, the only person Reagan can recognize is Nancy. He spends hours skimming leaves from the pool, which Secret Service agents surreptitiously drop back into the water.

"Reagan once spotted something at the bottom of a fish tank that reminded him of the man he once was. He stuck his arm into the aquarium, plucked out a miniature White House from the bottom and carried it home with him. "This has… something to do with me," he said, clutching the damp replica. "I'm not sure what."

Struck down in his golden years, no one deserves that kind of life. Not a President. Not a movie star.

And definitely not you or a loved one.

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