Bill Capo / Eyewitness News
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NEWORLEANS-- Despite fighting Parkinson's Disease, Richie Siegel feels like a new man.

'For some reason the weight of the world is off my shoulders for a little while,' said Siegel, a retiredNew Orleans Police Department officer.

What a change since the first Action Report last Thursday when the toll of the 15-year fight against Parkinson's left him barely able to stand or communicate.

'It pretty much stops you from doing anything,' Siegel said then, and suddenly his mind drifted. 'Like right now, I've lost my train of thought, just that quickly.'

But at least 1,000 people attended Sunday's Rockin' For Richie benefit at Rock 'n' Bowl, and he was the center of attention.

'I couldn't believe the outpour of love, and just came together with all these people that I hadn't seen in years.'

He danced with his daughter and joked about how much fun he had.

'I tell you, it's almost illegal,' Richie said, laughing.

'He was there the entire nine hours of the show, and talking,' said his wife Wendy.

And Richie is still feeling better than he has in years.

'I mean he walked to the door and answered it, then told me a joke,' said performer and friend Bobby Cure. 'It's great.'

'He's looking me in the eye, and he's touching me again, and telling me he loves me, which is also been a very long time,' Wendy said, tears in her eyes.

'We raised close to $40,000,' said Bobby Cure. 'That pays for medicine, pays for sitters.'

'No amount of money that we've spent on medicine or doctor's visits has done for him what I've seen since Sunday,' Wendy said.

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