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Bruce Willis’ family honors him on first Father’s Day since his dementia diagnosis

The actor's family shared that Bruce Willis was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia earlier this year.
/ Source: TODAY

Bruce Willis' family is celebrating the actor on the first Father's Day he's experienced since being officially diagnosed with dementia.

The actor's family announced in February that he'd been diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia. Previously, Willis had said he would be retiring from acting in March 2022 following an aphasia diagnosis, which affects a person’s ability to express and understand written and spoken language.

Willis’ wife, Emma Heming Willis, shared a post on Instagram of the father of five posing with the couple’s older daughter, Mabel, 11. In the snap, the father-daughter duo were sitting on a wicker seat as Mabel snuggled her cheek on her father’s shoulder while he gave her a kiss on the temple.

“Father’s Day is a time I get to reflect on my deep appreciation and respect I have for Bruce as I watch him father our little ones,” Heming Willis wrote in the caption. “Where it might not be ‘conventional,’ what he’s teaching them will span generations. Unconditional love, kindness, strength, compassion, patience, generosity, resilience.”

She concluded her caption on a sentimental note, adding, “Happy Father’s Day to the greatest dad I know, who will forever be the gift that keeps giving within our family.”

On her Instagram story, Heming Willis re-shared the photo of Mabel and her father alongside a picture of her and her husband posing the same manner. In the caption, she added a heartwarming message about her husband.

“His love feels like the warmest coziest blanket," she wrote. "Once you’re wrapped in it. You never want to get out.”

Emma Heming Willis pens a touching sentiment about her husband, Bruce Willis, for Father's Day.
Emma Heming Willis pens a touching sentiment about her husband, Bruce Willis, for Father's Day.Emma Heming Willis / Instagram

Willis' ex wife, actor Demi Moore, also shared a photo tribute to him on June 18, thanking him for the gift of their three shared daughters: Rumer, 34, Scout, 31, and Tallulah, 29.

The black and white throwback photo captured the family’s silly side, with all four of them sticking their tongues out at the camera.

"Forever grateful to you BW for giving me these three beautiful girls. We love our #girldad," she wrote. "Happy Father’s Day!"

Just one month after the family revealed his diagnosis, Willis celebrated his 68th birthday surrounded by family, including Moore, Heming Willis, and his five daughters. Across social media, the “Die Hard” star was honored by his family in sentimental posts that captured the bittersweet feeling of this celebration amid his health issues. 

At the time, Heming Willis said in an Instagram video that everyday she experiences bouts of “sadness” and “grief,” feelings which were exacerbated by his birthday.

Scout also penned an emotional message on social media for her father’s birthday, writing that it was “not necessarily an easy day."

“Our grief really does show us the depth of our loving for someone," she wrote. “Grief is a price I’ll always pay to know what it is to feel such love. I’m sending my love to anyone who has ever felt the capacity stretched by the enormity of love and humanness of grief.”