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Rumer Willis Says Dad Bruce Willis Is ‘So Good’ With Her Daughter Louetta Amid Dementia Diagnosis

Rumer Willis Says Dad Bruce Willis Is So Good With Her Daughter
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

Rumer Willis is sharing details about dad Bruce Willis‘ sweet relationship with her 1-year-old daughter Louetta amid his dementia diagnosis.

“He’s so good. I actually got to see him right before I came out [to New York],” the Sorority Row actress, 35, told Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager during a Wednesday, May 29, appearance on the Today show. “And Lou is just starting to walk a little bit, and she was walking over to him, and it was so sweet.”

Rumer, who is the eldest of the Die Hard star’s five daughters, went on to tell the cohosts that watching her dad interact with his granddaughter has brought back memories of growing up with a big family. (In addition to Rumer, Bruce, 69, shares daughters Scout, 32, and Tallulah, 30, with ex-wife Demi Moore. He also shares daughters Mabel, 12, and Evelyn, 10, with wife Emma Heming.)

“He’s a girl dad, through and through. I saw him with my sisters, my little sisters,” she said. “Honestly, seeing them [Bruce and Moore] with her, it almost unlocks all of these childhood memories because being a grandparent, I think, is the best. They have all of the love and joy without any of the responsibilities. They get to just spoil her.”

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Rumer and boyfriend Derek Richard Thomas welcomed their daughter in April 2023, a little more than a year after the Willis family shared the actor’s initial aphasia diagnosis.

Aphasia is a “language disorder that affects how you communicate” and is caused by “damage in the area of the brain that controls language expression and comprehension,” according to Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Rumer Willis Says Dad Bruce Willis Is So Good With Her Daughter
Courtesy of Rumer Willis/Instagram

“To Bruce’s amazing supporters, as a family we wanted to share that our beloved Bruce has been experiencing some health issues and has recently been diagnosed with aphasia, which is impacting his cognitive abilities,” the family wrote in a statement via Instagram in March 2022. “As a result of this and with much consideration Bruce is stepping away from the career that has meant so much to him.”

Nearly a year later, the Willis family released another statement revealing that the Pulp Fiction actor’s aphasia diagnosis had progressed to a “more specific diagnosis: frontotemporal dementia (known as FTD).”

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FTD is an “umbrella term for a group of brain diseases that mainly affect the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain” – areas that are “associated with personality, behavior and language,” according to Mayo Clinic.

“This experience has brought the whole family even closer together,” a source exclusively shared with Us Weekly in December 2023. “No one knows how much time Bruce has left, so they’re soaking up every moment they get with him.”

Though the family has been outspoken about the difficulties of watching their loved one live with dementia, Rumer recalled the sweet memories she’s had with her dad in an emotional birthday tribute she posted via Instagram in March.

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“To be loved by you is such a gift. You are the funniest, most tender, charming, out of this world silly talented and magical papa. Looking through these photos this morning I am just filled with the deepest gratitude that we chose to spend this life together,” she wrote.

She added, “I am your first baby and man, sometimes I wish I could be tiny enough to just cozy up on your chest again and laugh and cuddle you. I love you so deep in my bones I don’t know how my muscles hold them. You are the greatest papa I could ever hope for. Thank you for your generosity, your silliness and heart. Lou loves you so big. Happy Birthday, Daddio.”

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