By Terri LaPoint
August 16, 2019
All that Nancy Scott has wanted was for her mother, retired Alabama schoolteacher Marian Leonard, to be able to live out her final years surrounded by the love and support of her family. Nancy never dreamed that such a simple wish could be thwarted by lawyers and judges and doctors. Now, it appears that time has run out for her to get her mother closer to her home in the Wiregrass area of southern Alabama.
A Hospice staff member called Nancy Scott Wednesday morning and told her that she needs to return to Birmingham as soon as possible, because the end is near.
A year and a half ago, retired Alabama schoolteacher Marian Leonard was taken from her family, placed under state guardianship, and forced onto Hospice, all against her will.
See story here:
Marian Leonard assigned her daughter Power of Attorney, but all of her documents were set aside by probate judge Alan King. She is in solitary confinement, though she has committed no crime. See story:
Retired Schoolteacher Forced onto Hospice Forbidden to Have Visitors – Daughter Worried They Will Starve Her
When Nancy Scott arrived in Birmingham Wednesday evening, she tried to see her mother, but was told that she would have to wait until the next morning. Real News Spark did an exclusive Facebook Live interview with her that evening. Sherrie Saunders, a witness to some of the events surrounding Mrs. Leonard, called in with her perspective on the story.
A social worker told Nancy Scott last week that they had to increase her mother’s morphine dosage for her pain. Nancy says that, up until the state took over guardianship of her mother in 2018, Mrs. Leonard never wanted more than a Tylenol for occasional pain, including flare ups of “garden variety arthritis.” Her mother would never have wanted to be on such pain medicines. Nancy explains that she managed to make it to 101 years old without wanting strong drugs.
UTI Causing Pain, Not Being Treated
When Nancy was permitted to visit her mother yesterday, under supervision by a social worker, she quickly figured out what was causing her mother so much pain. She has a urinary tract infection. No one at the Diversicare nursing home and none of the hospice workers had noticed this, but the pain on her mother’s face when she urinated was unmistakable to Nancy.
This is the reason, Nancy says, that her mother is in pain. Instead of noticing the symptoms of the infection and treating it, they simply increased the pain medication.
The infection in Mrs. Leonard’s eye has spread to her other eye as well. Both of her eyes were bloodshot.
Yet, these things are untreated while Marion Leonard, now age 103, lies isolated and alone in a nursing home bed, forbidden to have visitors, only allowed to see her daughter twice a month for an hour and half each time. Her hearing aids and glasses are long since gone, without being replaced.
All this “torture,” as some would call it, is being done under the color of law, with the approval of a court, “in the best interest” of Marian Leonard.
If this is in her best interest, what future awaits our generation when we reach our sunset years?
Some supporters have called for a peaceful prayer vigil on behalf of Marian Leonard on the sidewalk in front of court-appointed guardian Sidney Summey’s office, located at 2025 3rd Avenue North, in downtown Birmingham, Alabama, on Tuesday, August 20 at 9 a.m.
Nancy Scott does not know if her mother will survive that long.
The following may be contacted on behalf of Marian Leonard:
Alabama Senate Majority Leader Jabo Waggoner represents the district where Marian (Gregory) Leonard is currently being held. He may be reached at 334-261-0892 or contacted here.
Representative David Wheeler is the House representative for that district. He may be reached at 334-261-0439 or contacted here.
Representative Dexter Grimsley represents the Henry County district where Marian Leonard and her family are from. He may be reached at 334-261-0513 or contacted here.
Diversicare of Riverchase
2500 River Haven Dr.
Birmingham, AL 35244
Alabama Department of Human Resources
Adult Protective Services Division
50 North Ripley Street
Montgomery, AL 36130
Adult Abuse Hotline 1-800-458-7214
Jefferson County Adult Division of the Alabama Department of Human Resources
Also, a complaint may be filed with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources for violation of civil rights of an elderly person in a skilled nursing facility.
A complaint may filed online through this link: https://ocrportal.hhs.gov/ocr/smartscreen/main.jsf
Alternatively, a complaint may be downloaded from the above link, filled in with ink or typed, and mailed, or a letter may be mailed to the following address:
Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, SW
Room 509F, HHH Building
Washington, D.C. 20201
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