Dementia is an ailment that usually affects elder people, although it could also hit younger people.
Some Hollywood stars that we have admired for their acting prowess have shown with signs of dementia.
At least 10 Hollywood celebrities, although much younger than Fr Byrne, have been observed to have symptoms of dementia, according to the Web site seniorsforliving.com. Here are the top 5:
1. Nick Nolte - Since he starred in Down and Out in Beverly Hills, the actor has been observed not to have combed his hair. He had a DUI arrest record and was once found unconscious at the Kauai airport.
2. Cloris Leachman - Observers said her performance at Dancing with the Stars is an indicator she is bound for a padded room. Her dance sequence always involves too much her breasts and at one point included a routine that mimicked mating time at the zoo.
3. OJ Simpson - While he escaped murder raps for the death of his ex-wife, the former star athlete got busted for back taxes and pirating satellite TV. He is known for his belief and attempted to assemble a gang of armed men that would storm a Las Vegas hotel room.
4. Ozzy Osbourne - Bites heads of small animals and shot 17 cats in his own house and then hid underneath a grand piano dressed in white suit while brandishing a shotgun and knife. Observers said there is no question that he is senile but the bigger concern is if he presents a danger to humanity.
5. Sharon Stone - Notorious for her leg-crossing scene in Basic Instinct, she has made uncalled-for comments on Chinese earthquakes, organised Tanzania fundraisers and claimed the Dalai Lama is her best friend. The Web site fears that one day, this "stoned" actress would one day run naked in the middle of an LA freeway and shove VHS copies of Basic Instinct at passing cars.
The five other celebrities mentioned by the Web site are Mel Gibson, Paula Abdul, Larry King, Liza Minnelli and George Takei.
Demented Australian Clergy Fined for Assault
Fr. Thomas Henry Byrne, an 81-year-old retired priest from Perth, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to charges of assault and injury to his neighbor over a parking bay dispute.
His victim, Fr. Thomas Smith, also a retired clergyman, previously accused Fr Byrne of unlawful assault causing grievous bodily harm with aggravation after the latter bit him on his ears on Nov 8, 2012, when the two octogenarians had a confrontation over a parking space at their apartment complex.
The Perth Magistrates Court downgraded the charge after Fr Byrne's lawyer, Seamus Rafferty, submitted a psychiatric report that the old priest was suffering from frontal lobe dementia which explained the changes in his character and social interaction. Another factor was that the victim, although his ear was severed, did not suffer long-term damage from the incident.
The lawyer said his client was ashamed of his action. Magistrate Steven Heath, who also heard testimonies that the retired priest was dedicated to the community and did not have any previous bad record, fined Fr Byrne $1,000.