Country crooner Clay Walker battles MS with a wife at his side


Twenty years ago, country star Clay Walker was playing basketball with friends, while on tour in Canada when he started feeling sick. He could keep his balance, had difficulty seeing and had a numb feeling in his limbs. While he jokes that his original thoughts were, that he had too much wine the night before, the reality was much more serious. Walker was suffering from symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS), a chronic, incurable disease that attacks the central nervous system.

“When I was first diagnosed I was told that I was in a wheelchair in four years and dead in eight,” Walker, now 47, told

Walker is not the devastating news at face value, and made use of new medications and information that is increasingly available on a large scale. He now has a relapse-free for 18 years.

Walker has sold over 11 million albums in his career, has 11 Number 1 singles to his name and is not planning to stop anytime soon. In fact, he is ready for the release of his first album in more than six years the name “Long Live the Cowboy.”

To balance his hectic life with MS, Walker is heavily dependent on his wife and caretaker, Jessica. It will play a major role in her husband’s health, while also maintaining their house has helped Jessica to understand that it is important to have a caregiver, and how to successfully keep the ones you love healthy and well.

“However, We need to have a plan for what would be for our best, every trip is different,” Jessica, who has three children with the Walker, told

For her family, she said that it is important to a healthy, organic diet and exercise, which means that the family makes an effort to cook together and try to work out for at least 10 minutes per day. When the Walker career takes him on the road and Jessica is not able to join him, she depends on a strong support team, including her husband and the band members, to pitch in and make sure he’s keeping up with medications, diet and exercise.

“Although there are more than 90 million [carers] country, it can be a lonely position at times,” she said. “Knowing that you can achieve and create your own support team is very important.”

What Walker appreciates about Jessica’s role as a caretaker is elusive. He credits her for making the house a happier place where the focus is not the disease.

“It is not a house of despair or despair. It’s really a place where we call can grow and feel good,” he said.

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