TEMPE, Ariz — It’s hard to grasp the reality of losing a parent, but losing one when they’re still alive, is nearly unimaginable. And, it was for ASU baseball’s Hunter Bishop, then a sophomore in high school, when he received the news that his mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer's.
“Honestly I was too young to really know what it was at the time,” Bishop said. “So, I was like, ‘she doesn’t seem too worried so it shouldn’t be an issue.’"
His mother has always been strong, and that’s something Hunter will always look up to her for.
“As I’m getting older it’s starting to get harder,” Bishop said. ” It’s just tough to not have a mom there to support me. I’ll come up after the game and see everyone's mom there. I love my dad to death but you know there are just some things dads can’t give you and can’t do for. I’d say that’s the hardest part and realizing she’s not going to be there for a lot of big times in me and my brother’s lives and my dad.”
The diagnosis has since given Hunter a new purpose in life and in baseball.
“Baseball is a lot bigger than me, it’s a lot bigger than my success or my failure, it doesn’t define who I am but if I’m going to do this, I’m going to do it for her. Like I said, she’s my best friend and she’s why I do everything," Bishop said.
In honor of their mother, Hunter and his brother Braden, who plays for the Seattle Mariners, founded 4Mom, an organization to help fight the disease.
“We started the 4Mom foundation just kind of as a small fundraising thing, we didn’t know how big it was going to be," Hunter said.
“Obviously we want to support our mom but we don’t want anyone else to have to suffer what we went through. At the end of the day we’re trying to find the first survivor.”
For more information on the organization, and how you can get involved, you can head to their website: 4Mom.org.