Tributes paid to “inspirational” Tom Isaacs


Author: Joe McAweaneyPublished: 7 June 2017

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Tom Isaacs tribute lead

Social media users within the Parkinson’s community and beyond, led by BBC journalist Jeremy Vine, have reacted to the death of The Cure Parkinson’s Trust co-founder Tom Isaacs

Emotional outpourings from social media users and Parkinson’s organisations have been published around the world in response to the news that Tom Isaacs, co-founder of The Cure Parkinson’s Trust, died on Wednesday 31 May.

Not long after the news broke, members of the Parkinson’s community took to Twitter to pay their respects.

BBC Radio 2 journalist Jeremy Vine led the way, hailing the significance of the “beautiful” Parkinson’s campaigner.

Parkinson’s UK CEO Steve Ford said it was a “very sad day” and described Isaacs as “such an inspiration”.

The Michael J Fox foundation spoke of the loss the Parkinson’s community had experienced.

Ann Hanley, founder of the Ann Hanley Parkinson’s Research Fund, revealed that it was Tom Isaacs who inspired her to start her own Parkinson’s organisation.

Ann said: “I am so devastated by the news. Tom was my friend and inspiration. He inspired me to start my own foundation.

“He was a giant among men, a visionary, a dreamer, a man who never gave up, who never quit. He made me laugh and was ever the optimist. I thank God for the privilege of knowing Tom and though saddened by his early demise, he will forever be with me in my thoughts and prayers as I continue to dedicate my life to our common cause.”

The British and Irish Lions, who hosted a charity dinner for The Cure Parkinson’s Trust in April, passed on a message of support.

Twitter user Sara Houston commented on how important Isaacs had been in taking forward research into Parkinson’s disease.

Lisa Vanderberg shared her devastation at the news, describing him as a “generous and inspiring man”.

Tom Isaac’s Parkinson’s Life highlights

Tom Isaacs: The road to fulfilment – from diagnosis to advocacy

Read this insightful piece discussing his psychological battle with Parkinson’s, April 2015.

Are we too focused on the search for a Parkinson’s cure?

Join the cure debate: a panel of experts, including Tom to argued as to whether the Parkinson’s community is overly focused on finding a cure, January 2016.

5 inspirational moments from the World Parkinson Congress 2016

He received the World Parkinson Coalition ‘Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Parkinson’s Community’ at the World Parkinson Congress, September 2016.

How I got Damien Hirst to make art for Parkinson’s

We interviewed Tom to find out more about how the ‘Cure3’ exhibition, a contemporary art exhibition and auction – which included work from Damien Hirst, Grayson Perry and Sarah Lucas – raised money for The Cure Parkinson’s Trust, January 2017.

Read more: Tom Isaacs president of The Cure Parkinson’s Trust has died

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