My father died peacefully on February 6, 2012. I had arrived a few hours before he died, so I had time to sit by him and talk and even moisten his lips with the long-promised scotch I had with me. I don't know if he heard me, but he smacked his lips from the scotch,
My father had Alzheimer's and had donated his brain to the Alzheimer's study he'd been part of at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center.
I'll continue to post for a while.
Usually my father is unaware of what's going on around him - probably in part because when you live in a nursing home you need to learn to tune out the assortment of movements and sounds (including screams, moans, alarm bells, etc.) around you.