‘The Young And The Restless’ Star Shares Heartbreaking News

Eric Braeden arrives to THE YOUNG AND THE RESTLESS table read and panel discussion at the Paley Center.
Sonja Flemming / CBS

Viewers of The Young and the Restless know and love Eric Braeden as the Great Victor Newman, and he’s incredibly active and responsive to his followers on social media. Recently, however, Braeden shared some heartbreaking news with his Twitter fans.

Braeden took to Twitter to share the details of his real-life oldest buddy’s diagnosis with Alzheimer’s disease along with two strokes. Braeden’s friend is a professor of Western Civilization, and the pair played soccer together when they won the 1973 National Challenge Cup with the Maccabi Los Angeles team. Braeden’s buddy’s daughters grew up across the street from him.

The actor posted a picture of himself with his pal who appears to have a great sense of humor with a fun t-shirt, and he expressed his wish that people enjoy their own families and friends. Fans took the message to heart responding with their own stories of family members affected by Alzheimer’s to which Braeden often responded expressing his sorrow that so many people understand some of what he’s experiencing watching his friend succumb to the disease. In one response, the actor expressed his belief that soon somebody will find a cure for the dread disease. Until then, though, 5.8 million Americans live with the disease, and it is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S., according to the Alzheimer’s Association.

On the show, the Abbott family is dealing with Dina’s (Marla Adams) Alzheimer’s progression, and the portrayal is heartbreaking especially knowing how difficult it is for people to deal with in real life. While Dina hasn’t been on-screen much lately, Jack (Peter Bergman), Traci (Beth Maitland), Kyle (Michael Mealor), and Summer (Hunter King) have talked about her rapidly deteriorating health. Plus, last week, a scene with Dina showed she felt great confusion and mistook everybody in the household as somebody else.

Last year, in a sweet storyline, Braeden’s Victor even took Dina to a dance when she mistakenly believed she was still in high school. The moment came during a time when Jack questioned his paternity, and for a brief moment, Jack and Victor thought they might be related. Thankfully for the enemies, they ended up not being related when the whole thing turned out to be a scam perpetrated by Ashley (Eileen Davidson) for revenge.

Real life is not a daytime drama, though, and the pain and suffering that Braeden and his friend, as well as the friend’s family, are suffering are quite real and challenging to handle.