Renee C. Byer/ rbyer@sacbee.com

Jennifer Small, 51, left, and Tracy Broshar, 55, right, walk Lucy and Abby on Thursday February 20, 2014 in East Sacramento, Calif. One of the most unwelcome diseases of older age - Alzheimer's - has intruded on the quiet domesticity of their middle years, bringing with it disbelief and sadness and shortening Jen's life span by decades. The future they imagined, a happy retirement together, is gone. They don't know how long this unexpected new journey will take, but they know that over time Jen's memory will disappear.

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