Jack Parkinson’s Final Days
Last Saturday, I saw my dad. We went shopping and he got pants to wear. Some very nice dress pants. He also put money down on a chair that would make it easier for him to get up and down….It was one of those chairs that have the lift in it. He was so excited and I had hoped to get it out for him before the third. when his check would come in. While there, I filled up his pill container, as I always do on Saturdays. I noticed that his pill container was not as empty as it should be and he stated that he would forget sometimes. He also wanted me to give him his night meds at like 2 pm. I told him that it was important he takes his medications all the time and that he didn’t need to take his night pills that early in the afternoon because doing so he could be taking medications too close together. He said he would try to take everything the way he was supposed to. We talked about the property and his hopes. I told him that I couldn’t wait to come back home because I missed our morning coffee time. Every morning when I lived there, he and I would get together and drink coffee. If there was a morning when he didn’t walk to my mom’s house- I would go to his and check on him to make sure he was okay.
I saw him again on Tuesday. We had to run to the lawyer’s office to sign some medical release forms so they could pull more of his medical records. My dad was very emotional. We talked about his and mom’s house. He was talking about the rebuild and things that he wished to do to both houses once we got the property back. He talked about the table that he sits at all the time….one of the last things he and my mom built together before she got sick… He talked about his dogs…saying he couldn’t believe they wanted him to get rid of his animals. He said that he would never get rid of Holly and Trooper. He talked about how he couldn’t move away from his home. He said physically he couldn’t do it…I told him he wouldn’t have to do any of it. We talked about his heart surgery…he asked me if he had only been gone a few days. I told him he was gone about a month and a half and he began crying. He said he didn’t think he had been away that long. I told him only that they had to make sure he got better both physically and mentally, but that yes, he had been away for a while. He then asked what the papers meant that he had signed. I told him it was to ensure the lawyer could get the medical records he needed. That it would further prove he was maybe not thinking clearly at the time of signing the land over…and that his health had suffered since doing so. I never tell my dad he has dementia and that the lawyer is trying to prove he has dementia. My dad is a proud man….and I know it hurts him to know and hear it…but on that Tuesday, when I sugar coated his mental status in our talk, he looked at me and he said,-you know I’m not always thinking clearly. I then said, “no. you don’t always think clearly. We have had a lot of rough patches…:
I wish I had known then that Tuesday would be the last time I talked to him. When I left I told him I’d be back on Thursday but to call me if he needed anything before then. I had forgotten that Thursday was my 2-yr old grandchild’s birthday. I also got caught up with some other issues. Toward Thursday evening I had the thought that my dad should have called by now…but it was late enough in the evening that I wouldn’t call him. He is an early to bed type…often in bed by 6-7pm.
On Friday morning I got up and attempted to call. He didn’t answer. I got worried and immediately began getting dressed to go. I tried to call once more on my way to his house….I still didn’t get an answer. I decided to wait on getting him smokes because I expected him to want to go to town. He liked to get out sometimes…I arrived at his house at noon. He wasn’t at the table…he wasn’t in his old recliner. I called out from his bedroom door when I saw him in bed. I walked up to him and touched him….30 seconds later I began crying and called 911. It took forever for them to show up. I remember at one time looking at the clock and it was 12:30. There were police, there were EMTs, there were coroners, and investigators. there were people everywhere….Asking questions and taking down information while expressing condolences. It seemed like a lifetime passed by…but in reality, it was only an hour or so.
The EMTs and everyone say that it looks like my dad suffered a massive heart attack and then asphyxiated on his vomit. They said that they could tell with his pill container that he was sporadic at taking his medications. Since he was on blood thinner and taking it off schedule, there is a chance that he had a clot that broke loose or something else going on. They said that when you are on blood thinners, you have to stick to it or you take a chance….If only I had been there to remind him to take his morning and evening pills like I use to be, my dad would still be here…Do you know how devastating that is?
Giving My Dad a Voice Against Elderly Abuse
I contacted my dad’s lawyer….When we get a certificate of death the lawyer wants to meet up. We can take dad’s name off the case and put my name there instead. We are going forward with it all….My dad will never have his day in court, but perhaps through me…..I can still ensure his voice is heard. It is not fair….All he ever asked was to be allowed to live his life on his property until he died and then he wanted his ashes to be put with my mom’s. The family took his property….and tried to remove him from it. Because of all this BS, I cannot put his ashes with hers…The only final wishes that he has had so far is he died at home and the cremation will be done by the same people that cremated my mom. The best that I can hope for now is that I can get the property back for him…It is my battle now.