Fact Check: Morgan Freeman Did NOT Thank Ben Carson for Curing His Dementia

Fact Check

  • by: Ed Payne
Fact Check: Morgan Freeman Did NOT Thank Ben Carson for Curing His Dementia Fake Photo

Did actor Morgan Freeman publicly thank Dr. Ben Carson for curing his dementia? No, that's not true: There's no reliable evidence or confirmed news reports indicating that the Academy Award winner has dementia or that Carson -- retired neurosurgeon and former Department of Housing and Urban Development secretary -- treated him for it. Additionally, there is no cure for dementia; current treatments can only manage symptoms and slow the progression of the disease. A photo has been edited to show the two men together in a social media post about dementia.

The claim appeared in a post (archived here) on Facebook by Tracy Murphy on March 3, 2024. The post's caption said:

Memory loss and Alzheimer's are only one step away! How can you spot the threat in time? At the American Congress of Neurosurgery, Dr. Ben Carson presented a new approach to dementia repair that allows you to improve dementia at home.Thank you Dr Carson for curing my dementia. I was happy to have my picture taken with him and will always remember this great!

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:


(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Thu May 30 15:19:07 2024 UTC)

The post

The post displays what it falsely claims is a picture of Carson with Freeman, leaving the implication that it is Freeman who wrote, "Thank you Dr Carson for curing my dementia. I was happy to have my picture taken with him ..."

While the image shows both men, it's been edited to put them together.

The photograph

Through a reverse image search with Google Lens, Lead Stories found that the photo featured in the post on Facebook was not legitimate. Carson was inserted into a 2011 picture that originally featured fellow actor Sidney Poitier with Freeman at the 43rd Annual Chaplin Award Gala. The image appears below:


(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Thu May 30 21:11:21 2024 UTC)

Similar searches for the source of the Carson image were not conclusive,

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says this about dementia:

Neurodegenerative dementias, like Alzheimer's disease, have no cure, though there are medications that can help protect the brain or manage symptoms such as anxiety or behavior changes.

Alzheimer's Society

The Alzheimer's Association website provides similar information:

There's no cure for Alzheimer's, but there are treatments that may change disease progression, and drug and non-drug options that may help treat symptoms.

Google search

Lead Stories did searches using keywords on Google News, visible here (archived here), which found no credible documents or reporting as of May 30, 2024, to corroborate the claim that Freeman publicly thanked Carson for curing his dementia.

Read more

Other Lead Stories fact checks about Ben Carson can be found here.

Additional Lead Stories fact checks of claims related to Morgan Freeman can be found here.

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  Ed Payne

Ed Payne is a staff writer at Lead Stories. He is an Emmy Award-winning journalist as part of CNN’s coverage of 9/11. Ed worked at CNN for nearly 24 years with the CNN Radio Network and CNN Digital. Most recently, he was a Digital Senior Producer for Gray Television’s Digital Content Center, the company’s digital news hub for 100+ TV stations. Ed also worked as a writer and editor for WebMD. In addition to his journalistic endeavors, Ed is the author of two children’s book series: “The Daily Rounds of a Hound” and “Vail’s Tales.” 

Read more about or contact Ed Payne

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