Monday, December 5, 2022

Anne Heche's Son Homer Laffoon, 20, Named General Administrator of Her Estate

By Dana Feldman and Stephanie Wenger 

Anne Heche Homer Laffoon James Tupper. PHOTO: getty (2); Anne Heche/Instagram

Anne Heche
's older son Homer Laffoon has been named general administrator of her estate after a months-long legal battle with her ex James Tupper that began after the actress died following a car crash in August.

The 20-year-old has been vying to take legal control over Heche's remaining assets despite legal objections from Tupper, 57. In court in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Homer — whom Heche shared with ex-husband Coleman Laffoon — scored a legal victory when Judge Lee Bogdanoff named him to a permanent position of power.

Homer's attorney Bryan Phipps issued a statement to PEOPLE after the hearing: "We believe the court reached the correct result this morning, both legally and equitably, and are glad to have this phase of the process behind us. With Mr. Tupper's allegations and objections now resolved, we are hopeful the administration of the Estate can proceed without unnecessary complication." 

The judge did issue the caveat that Homer could be removed as administrator if any evidence of fraud or embezzlement surfaces related to the estate. (This proviso seemingly was issued in response to Tupper's claim that $200,000 worth of jewelry has gone missing that Heche owned at the time of their relationship just four years ago.) But up to this point, said Judge Bodganoff, there has been no evidence of wrongdoing.  

With Heche's second memoir schedule to released in January and residuals for her acting roles still incoming, Judge Bodganoff noted the estate's value is not set, so he scheduled a future hearing on the matter to address an $800,000 bond on the estate Homer previously requested. 

Wednesday's decision comes more than a month after Homer was granted expanded "special powers" as the special administrator of Heche's estate, according to court documents obtained by PEOPLE.  

Homer was granted permission to "take possession of all the personal property of the estate of the decedent and preserve it from damage, waste, and injury," according to the documents. He is required to move the property into a storage facility and inventory the items within five days of the relocation.

He was also granted the power to protect the interests of Heche in "the publication agreement" of her forthcoming book.

Additionally, Homer is able to receive copies of Heche's financial records and file personal tax returns on her behalf. The documents state that Homer is now able to "commence and maintain or defend" suits and other legal proceedings. 

Tupper previously objected to Homer's latest request for the court to "expand his authority" over his late mother's estate, citing poor treatment of his and Heche's son, 13-year-old Atlas.

Tupper, 57, previously alleged that Homer "has acted in a hostile manner" towards his half brother and "has refused to communicate with him or his representatives at all." 

"Further, Atlas has no confidence in [Homer]'s ability to meet his fiduciary obligations to Atlas," the filing stated, adding that Homer has allegedly not inventoried their mother's belongings, per his agreement with Tupper and Atlas, before they place the items in storage.

Tupper's attorney Christopher B. Johnson previously argued that Homer already had some of the powers he'd requested from the court, which they said "underscores his lack of competence and inability to preserve estate assets."

Johnson repeated those claims in court on Wednesday, claiming "mismanagement" by Homer, but Judge Bogdanoff declared there was no evidence of any malfeasance by Homer, nor any credence to Tupper's claims. (When Homer was named special administrator in late October, the filing indicated that Tupper's objection had been "reviewed and considered.")

Judge Bodganoff added at this latest hearing that he has "encouraged the brothers to talk about things" twice, noting that "Atlas was caught in the crossfire" of the legal battle over control of the estate. 

After Homer filed papers to assume control of his mother's estate in September, he and Tupper have been locked in a legal battle. Although Homer claimed that his mother didn't have a will, Tupper said Heche named him the executor more than a decade ago. Homer has since argued that the signature on his mother's purported will is not valid, while accusing Tupper of preventing him from communicating with his younger brother.

The pair has also been fighting for guardianship ad litem of Atlas, with Tupper arguing earlier this month that Homer has "conflicts of interest" in the custody battle for his biological son as it relates to Heche's estate, and that appointing him custody "would actually harm the interests" of Atlas. 

Heche died after being involved in a car accident in Los Angeles on Aug. 5. After being in a coma, the state of California declared Heche legally dead on Aug. 12. She was temporarily kept on life support in order to prepare her organs for donation. On Aug. 14, her rep confirmed to PEOPLE she had been taken off life support.  

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Anne Heche's Son Homer Laffoon, 20, Named General Administrator of Her Estate

This latest Alzheimer’s drug breakthrough is reason for hope – and further funding

by Michael Aylwin

 Researchers are a step closer to unravelling the cruel mystery of the dementia that afflicts my wife and so many others

Lecanemab removes clumps of a protein called beta amyloid, which clump together to form plaques (illustrated in brown) and disrupt cell function. Photograph: AP

In an age of excessive information, we have each developed a filtering system. To compensate, we acquire our own keywords, which pierce these systems, or, in the old parlance, make our ears prick up, be they the names of favourite teams, musicians, pastimes, conspiracy theories. Brexit.

In recent years, I have joined millions of others in acquiring the more unfortunate triggers of “dementia” and “Alzheimer’s”, but these keywords are not always the harbingers of bad news. Last week, the headlines linking them with others, such as “breakthrough” and “treatment”, will have set many of us off into a frenzy of information-gathering.

Behind the headlines, a more complex picture emerges. The announcement that lecanemab, a monoclonal antibody, can slow the cognitive decline of Alzheimer’s patients is a long way short of declaring an imminent cure for this terrible affliction, but it represents a qualitative shift in the decades-long search for a treatment.

Last year, a similar drug, aducanumab, was controversially granted its licence in America, because it was the first drug shown to alter the course of Alzheimer’s by clearing the brain of deposits of amyloid-beta, a protein that is thought to be the prime mover in the disease. That was another qualitative shift, but aducanumab’s FDA approval was controversial because its capacity to alleviate symptoms is less clear.

Lecanemab seems to take matters a step further by achieving a significant, if modest, degree of clinical benefit. Multiple caveats apply here too, but they are matched by at least as many other drugs and combinations of drugs being trialled. In quiet moments, neuroscientists accept that researchers in their field have been promising breakthroughs throughout those decades, all to no avail. Now, at last, they have achieved meaningful results in consecutive years with much more in the offing. The ball is rolling.

All of which will come too late for my wife, Vanessa. She has a rare genetic form of Alzheimer’s, from which her mother died in 2006, aged 58. Vanessa did not know her mum’s condition was genetic, but she always sensed the same fate awaited her. In her mid-to-late-40s, glaring lapses in memory started to creep in. Since 2018, her decline has been sharp. She has just turned 53 and has been in a nursing home for more than a year, unable to speak, feed herself, wash or dress.

The first problems with swallowing have recently presented themselves and she clings on to what is left of her beloved walking. But, when all else has fallen away, the smile and the laugh remain, however random, however much the result of stimuli unknown in her deteriorating brain.

There is no need to pull on heartstrings any further. All terminal diseases are hideous. Dementia’s twist is the way it comes for the very soul of you, brutal and enigmatic in equal measure. Only now are we starting to catch up with it. This is where we can move from heartstrings to numbers. Governments and businesses have always responded more readily to those.

As life expectancy lengthens and science grows more sophisticated, the extent of dementia’s drain on society is revealing itself at every turn. The total cost of dementia to the UK economy in 2019 was £34.7bn, more than cancer and heart disease combined. That figure is projected to treble by 2040. Meanwhile, annual funding for research from the government has settled around the £80m mark, less than a third of cancer’s allocation. If charitable contributions are included, dementia’s total is less than a fifth of cancer’s. Its cost to the economy, however, is nearly five times greater.

This disparity undoubtedly owes itself to dementia’s historic elusiveness, in contrast to the bolder, more physical nature of other conditions easier to define, identify and treat. Now that science is unravelling its mysteries and the extent of the toll it exacts, the case for prioritising research into dementia, not to mention provision for the costs of care, which are crippling in themselves (two-thirds of that £34.7bn is met by the afflicted and their families), has become unanswerable.

The relationship between funding and technological progress is direct and uncomplicated. We have seen that with Covid and cancer. Far more than a trigger to seize the attention of those affected by dementia, may the mysterious, magical word “lecanemab” prick up the ears of those allocating budgets. At least as much as it represents hope for a future cure, lecanemab must act as a lightning rod for further funding and research. We are on to dementia now. This is the time to go after it.

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This latest Alzheimer’s drug breakthrough is reason for hope – and further funding

Sunday, December 4, 2022

Ex-LPL Rep Charged With Stealing $1.3M From Client With Dementia

By Jeff Berman

What You Need to Know

  • The SEC last year charged a former LPL broker with stealing $1.295 million from an older client suffering from dementia.
  • He was arrested in Illinois on Wednesday by the Yorkville Police Department on an arrest warrant.
  • The former broker was charged with 23 felonies, including 10 counts of financial exploitation of an elderly person.

A former LPL Financial broker and registered representative was arrested in Illinois on Wednesday by the Yorkville Police Department on an arrest warrant from Kendall County, Illinois, that stemmed from a 2021 investigation into his alleged theft of $1.3 million from an older client with dementia, according to the Yorkville Police Department.

The police, acting with approval from the Kendall County State’s Attorney’s Office, charged Bradley A. Goodbred with 23 felonies: 10 counts of financial exploitation of an elderly person (a Class 1 Felony), two counts of financial exploitation of an elderly person (Class 2 Felony), seven counts of theft (Class 1 Felony), and four counts of theft (Class 2 Felony), according to police.

On Sept. 29, 2021, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged Bradley A. Goodbred with stealing $1.295 million from the client, who had dementia, at the time and then using the funds for his personal and business expenses.

According to the SEC’s complaint, Goodbred worked as a registered representative and investment advisor representative in the Roselle, Illinois, office of an SEC-registered broker-dealer and investment advisor.

Although the SEC complaint did not identify the firm, the former broker was with LPL from 2009 to 2021, according to his report on the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s BrokerCheck website.

LPL terminated Goodbred on Jan. 13, 2021, for using “unapproved power of attorney to facilitate distribution of customer funds to a real estate company representative,” according to a disclosure on his report.

LPL did not immediately comment on Friday.

The SEC complaint alleged that, from at least 2012 to 2020, Goodbred solicited one of his clients, who was 97 years old at the time of the SEC complaint, to send him money to make purported investments in real estate investment trusts on her behalf and to transfer the money to one of his businesses.

The complaint also alleged that, to fund some of the purported investments, the client, with the advice and approval of Goodbred, sold securities in her account and transferred the proceeds to Goodbred.

According to the complaint, Goodbred didn’t use the client’s money to make investments in REITs or any other investments on her behalf. Rather, he used the client’s funds for his personal expenses and business expenses unrelated to any purported investments, according to the SEC.

Those personal expenses included credit card debt for himself and his wife, as well as income taxes and auto loans, the SEC complaint said.

As alleged in the SEC complaint, Goodbred repaid the client a total of only $454,141.

The SEC charged Goodbred with violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5, and Sections 206(1) and 206(2) of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, and sought injunctive relief, disgorgement, prejudgment interest and civil penalties.

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Ex-LPL Rep Charged With Stealing $1.3M From Client With Dementia

Pelé says he is feeling ‘strong’ after reports of move to end-of-life care

Pelé is reportedly responding well to treatment for a respiratory infection, his hospital says. Photograph: Lucas Jackson/Reuters

The Brazilian football great Pelé posted on Instagram on Saturday evening to say that he is feeling “strong” and “with hope”, after an outpouring of concern online in response to unconfirmed reports that he had been moved to palliative care.

“I want to keep everyone calm and positive,” Pelé wrote, sharing the latest medical report from São Paulo’s Albert Einstein hospital that says he remains in stable condition. “I follow my treatment as usual.”

Pelé, 82, who helped the Brazilian national team win three World Cups, ended his message by calling on fans to watch the seleção play in this year’s tournament. Brazil will face South Korea in Doha on Monday.

Earlier, the hospital said Pelé remained in a stable condition after being hospitalised this week as he battles colon cancer. He has also responded well to treatment for a respiratory infection and his condition has not worsened in the last 24 hours, the medical staff said. He was admitted to hospital on Tuesday to re-evaluate his cancer treatment.

On Saturday morning the Brazilian newspaper Folha de S.Paulo reported that Pelé is receiving palliative care after he stopped responding to chemotherapy treatment for the cancer.

According to the newspaper, the chemotherapy has now been suspended and Pelé is receiving end-of-life care, being treated only for symptoms such as pain and shortness of breath.

The Albert Einstein hospital in São Paulo declined to confirm reports that the football legend known as The King is under palliative care and said it would only communicate through official bulletins. A medical report released on Friday said Pelé was being treated with antibiotics for a respiratory infection. His condition was “stable, with a general improvement in his health status”, the report said.

Football stars past and present, including French striker Kylian Mbappé, wished Pelé well on social media following the reports that he is receiving palliative care. “Pray for The King,” Mbappé tweeted.

Pelé had sought to reassure fans in an Instagram post on Thursday, saying that he was making his “monthly visit” to hospital. He posted a picture of a Qatar building lit up with a message wishing him a prompt recovery and thanked the World Cup-hosting nation for “the tribute”.

His daughter, Kely Nascimento, who is in Qatar for the tournament, also sought to assuage concerns surrounding the football legend’s health. “The media is freaking out again,” she said on social media on Thursday, adding that her siblings were with their father and that Pelé’s health did not require her to jump on a plane back to Brazil.

Born Edson Arantes do Nascimento, Pelé is considered one of the greatest footballers of all time. He rose to international fame aged just 17 when he scored six goals for Brazil in the 1958 World Cup, including two in the final in which Brazil beat the hosts, Sweden, to win their first world title.

Pelé, who retired from football in 1977, has been suffering from health problems in recent years. He was diagnosed with colon cancer in September 2021 and spent two weeks in hospital last December.

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Pelé says he is feeling ‘strong’ after reports of move to end-of-life care

Saturday, December 3, 2022

Pa. lawyer pleads guilty to stealing $1 million from his clients

A formerly prominent Chester County attorney has plead guilty to stealing over $1 million from clients, according to a story from The Daily Local News.

Thomas Evan Schindler, 62, of Newlin Township, admitted in court that he had taken money from clients that he was not entitled to, and had in one case lied about where the money was.

The total number of money stolen comes to more than $1 million, according to a summary of the cases provided by prosecutor Deputy District Attorney William J. Judge Jr.

According to the terms of his plea agreement, Schindler will be sentenced to a state prison term of 2.5 to 6 years. He will be placed on probation following his prison term, and have to make restitution to the four victims in the case, three of whom had hired him to represent them in civil and criminal cases, the news site said.

Schindler was initially charged by Easttown police in June 2021 with stealing over $991,000 from a former client who hired him for a divorce proceeding. According to the Daily Local News, Schindler failed to make the required transfers of proceeds from the sale of the couple’s home. 

He was then arrested this year by Chester County detectives, and charged with two separate cases of stealing $86,000 from former clients, looting an escrow account that had been set up to handle the victims’ funds and taking money to represent a man charged in a criminal case but doing little or no work before he was disbarred. In one case, he reported the theft to investigators himself, the news outlet reported.

Schindler, who was disbarred in 2020, will remain free on bail until he is formally sentenced, sometime early next year.

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Pa. lawyer pleads guilty to stealing $1 million from his clients

Federal Grand Jury in Louisville Indicts New York Man for His Role in "Grandparent Scam" Targeting Senior Victims

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Kentucky
Louisville, KY – A federal grand jury in Louisville returned an indictment in October charging a New York man with conspiracy to commit mail fraud for his role in a “grandparent scam” that impacted senior victims around the country, including a Meade County individual who lost tens of thousands of dollars to the scam. “Grandparent scams,” also known as “person-in-need scams,” involve perpetrators making false claims to victims that their loved one is in jeopardy and in need of money that the perpetrator will use to assist the loved one.      

U.S. Attorney Michael A. Bennett of the Western District of Kentucky and U.S. Postal Inspector in Charge Lesley Allison of the Pittsburg Division made the announcement.

According to court documents, Juan Carlos Arcena Cabrera, 28, of Yonkers, New York, conspired with others to trick seniors into sending cash payments under the false pretense that a grandchild or loved one had been in a car accident or was facing legal trouble. Scam callers would reach out to victims repeatedly, claiming more money was needed to cover additional emergency expenses. As part of this conspiracy, Cabrera posed as the grandson of a Kentucky victim and attempted to pick up a parcel full of cash that the victim had shipped from Kentucky to a FedEx store in New York.

Cabrera was arraigned yesterday in U.S. District Court. If convicted, he faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. There is no parole in the federal system. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the United States Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

The United States Postal Inspection Service is investigating the case with assistance from the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation, the Department of Homeland Security Investigations, the United States Secret Service, and the New York Police Department.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Corinne E. Keel is prosecuting the case.

This case was investigated and prosecuted as part of the National Elder Justice Task Force and the Kentucky Elder Justice Task Force. The Department of Justice’s mission of its Elder Justice Initiative is to support and coordinate the Department’s enforcement and programmatic efforts to combat elder abuse, neglect and financial fraud and scams that target our nation’s older adults. In response to the growing need and targeting areas of greatest concern, the Department of Justice initially stood up 10 task forces made up of 11 federal districts to combat a variety of elder abuse, including elder financial exploitation. Kentucky’s federal districts make up two of the 11 districts under the Initiative. Kentucky’s task force is comprised of investigators, prosecutors, and others at the local, state, and federal level with a common objective of protecting seniors across Kentucky.

In October, the Department announced that as part of its continuing efforts to protect older adults and bring perpetrators of fraud schemes to justice it is expanding the Transnational Elder Fraud Strike Force, adding 14 new U.S. Attorney’s Offices. Expansion of the Strike Force will help to coordinate the Department’s ongoing efforts to combat largest and most harmful fraud schemes that target or disproportionately impact older adults.  

An indictment is merely an allegation. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Federal Grand Jury in Louisville Indicts New York Man for His Role in "Grandparent Scam" Targeting Senior Victims

Caregiver arrested on elderly abuse charges

An investigation by special agents with the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Medicaid Fraud Control Division, along with other agencies, has resulted in the arrest of a Shelbyville man, charged with the abuse and neglect of elderly patients.

In January, at the referral of Adult Protective Services, agents joined that agency and the Department of Health, in investigating a complaint that residents at an assisted living facility in Bedford County were being abused and/ or neglected. During the course of the investigation, agents developed information that identified Cody Prestwood, a licensed practical nurse at the facility, as the individual responsible for the abuse and neglect of the residents. The investigation also revealed that from December 2021 through August 2022, Prestwood failed on multiple occasions to document those incidents and failed to seek proper treatment for the individuals involved.

On November 9th, Cody Andrew Prestwood (DOB 09/17/1988) was arrested by the Bedford County Sheriff’s Office. He is charged with two counts of Aggravated Abuse of an Elderly Adult, two counts of Neglect of an Elderly Adult, and one count of Abuse of an Elderly Adult. Prestwood was booked into the Bedford County Jail, on a $250,000 bond.

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Caregiver arrested on elderly abuse charges

Friday, December 2, 2022

From One Caregiver To Another: No One Knows What We Do

We're family caregivers, you and I. And we're invisible.

By Connie Baher

My mom is 105, and I've cared for her for 13 years. So if you've been caring for your older parent, spouse, partner, or friend for the long haul, you know what I'm talking about.

It's a lonely job, caregiving. And no one knows what we do — day after day looking after someone, coping with daunting and sometimes incomprehensible medical issues, hoping that we're doing the right thing as we take on the vast, evolving and endless responsibilities of being someone else's caregiver.

A caregiver with her mom making dinner. Next Avenue, family caregivers, caregiving
It's a lonely job, caregiving. And no one knows what we do — day after day looking after someone, hoping that we're doing the right thing.  |  Credit: Centre for Ageing Better

So let's talk about what we do.

Remember how it started? You offer to help with the groceries and drive them to their doctor's appointments. You bring them to your house on the weekends to watch a movie together and have a nice home-cooked meal. And then the job expands.

Now you're paying the bills and ordering the meds. And at your place, the guest room they used to stay in is currently empty. They can't climb your stairs anymore. So you find help at their home, and it may be time for them to move to a facility.

You spend hours looking for a good place, getting them a medical checkup and TB test, signing endless documents, doing your best to help your person make new friends, acclimate to the loss of their home and the smells and routines and privations of this new place to live.

The Ways We Help

So, we visit and listen to the problem list. We clean under the bed, find the scattered pills, and throw them away, and we quietly put a new package of Depends in their closet.

Next, we bring their clothes home to wash. It's indelicate. We have breached the line between parent and child, between spouses, partners, and friends — one should not be handling their undergarments.

We wake in the middle of the night, wondering if they are also awake, and hoping that they're not having another one of those frustratingly enduring sleepless nights.

We visit again, and as we leave their room (wondering if this may be our last glimpse of them alive), we take a parting look at them and the room itself. What simple thing should I do before I go — is there a box of Kleenex too far away to reach, a flip-top can of soda that should be opened?

What can I do so they are not left imprisoned by their inabilities? How terrible it must be for them, we think. What must it be like to feel life ebbing away, to suffer the indignities as their once strong handwriting has dwindled to uneven scratch marks, as their hands and legs become mottled with bruises because they're taking blood thinners, and everything causes a bruise?

We can never honestly know what the world looks like through their failing eyes, the panic that grips them in the middle of the night, the bewilderment, the fear, the helplessness.

We're just the family, struggling along. We stumble, pick ourselves up, go at it again, and try to do better. It's hard — no question about it — to look beyond the daily challenges, but if we zoom out for a moment, there is something else to see.

Amy Abrams, a San Diego social worker who has counseled scores of long-haul family caregivers, speaks of caregiving as a transformative experience. "Caregivers find inner strength and competence they would never have thought they had," she says.

The Gift of Time Together

There is the son who nursed his mother for four years, sleeping on the floor beside her bed. But then, he told me, "I discovered that weak as I thought I was, I have such a gift of adaptability, endurance, tolerance, patience."

There is the daughter who moved cross country to care for her mother: "I realized how lucky I was to spend time with her. To revisit the home that I was desperate to leave in my teens. I got to appreciate her and all she had been through. It gave me a purpose. So even though it was a mixed blessing, this has been a gift."

And then there is the simple gift of slowing down and spending time together. Occasionally, I have a slow, quiet visit with my mom. The chores have been taken care of, there's enough medicine on hand, we've got the TV working again, and we talk — mostly, though, I listen.

Mom talks about her life, the school where she felt so lonely except for the art teacher who recognized her talent, how she gave up a serious pursuit of art to be a wife and mother, how she rebuilt her life after my father died, finally winning long-sought approval as an accomplished artist.

She is adding it all up and preparing to let go.

I have heard these stories before, but as I listen to Mom on this day, I also hear her determination to rise above each bodily insult; I hear the grit that keeps her going, and I am thankful for what she is teaching me. So, yes, I nod; you've led a good life. It is a gentle, sweet moment that we share.

If no one knows what we give — and give up — as caregivers, perhaps also no one knows what we get. We get the chance to live out a unique kind of love.

Therefore, at this season of giving thanks, and as the country marks National Family Caregivers Month, here is a celebration of what we do as family caregivers. With indebtedness to the famous verses from First Corinthians:

A Caregiver's Love

Love is making that first sweet offer of help.

Love is being there as things get worse.

Love is loss and sadness as he or she slips away from the person you once knew.

Love is pain as you feel your helplessness to stop their suffering.

Love is the soothing music that you put behind your words of care.

Love is brave enough to confront frailty and decline.

Love is the courage to show up daily, asking, "how are you today?"

Love is the strength to hear them out when they are depressed and life to them is dismal. When they have not slept, they have awakened in the middle of the night, fearing they are dying.

Love is the moments of joy when you encourage their memories of good times, their childhood, falling in love, and the times you listen to stories of their lives that will otherwise be lost.

Love is hanging in as they lose the ability to open a jar, walk on their own, or manipulate their hearing aids.

Love is staying engaged despite the toll.

Love is reaching out to their heart.

Love is warm and embracing.

Love is saying, I love you, even when they cannot say the same to you.

Love knows you cannot fix the illness or slow death's approach.

Love is recognizing their fears and anxieties, and the unknowing that they live with every day and night as they wait

Love is learning to live on the edge of eternity.

Love is silent tears that well up from nowhere.

Love is walking ahead, while sorrow is your shadow.

Love is holding their hand as you both tread unfamiliar territory.

And love is waiting beside them, imperfect as you are, as they take their final steps.

Full Article & Source:
From One Caregiver To Another: No One Knows What We Do

Woman Finds Biological Father in Nursing Home 56 Years After Adoption — And Now She Cares for Him

"I prepared myself to find a grave, and I now found a person, and it was just absolutely mind-blowing," Deanna Shrodes said of meeting her 92-year-old father

By Abigail Adams

A daughter's search for her biological father ended when she found him in a nursing home more than 56 years after she was adopted.

Deanna Shrodes, of Florida, met her father Gus Nicholas, 92, for the very first time back in May after she matched with him using genetic testing through 23andMe, according to CBS News.

"I prepared myself to find a grave, and I now found a person, and it was just absolutely mind-blowing," Shrodes told the outlet. "Couldn't believe that I had found a person." 

Shrodes, who is an ordained minister, was an infant when she was adopted in 1966, according to a story about her search on a church website. She had spent two months in foster care beforehand.

At age 27, Shrodes found her mother Sally King and had a relationship with her for the next 20 years, per the reports. King died just a few months after she was diagnosed with cancer. 

But King never shared the name of Shrodes' biological father with her daughter. So, Shrodes set out to find him on her own.

Using the two clues her mother gave her — that her father is Greek and from Richmond, Va. — Shrodes spent 10 years searching.

Earlier this year, her prayers were answered — literally. 

"I told my husband, I told my best friend Laura … I said, 'Listen, guys, you might think I'm crazy, but I was in prayer. God spoke this to me: 'Your father's name is Gus,' " she told CBS News.

A short time later, she matched with Nicholas on 23andMe, and connected with one of Nicholas' relatives, who said, "I think you're my Uncle Gus' daughter."

The next day, Shrodes got to call her father, who was also excited to find his daughter.

"He said, 'I woke up this morning and I was alone ... And now this afternoon, I have a daughter. I have a son-in-law. I have three grandchildren. I have great-grandchildren ... I 'm not alone in the world anymore,' " she recalled. "And I said, 'No, you're not. You're not.' " 

Nicholas, a retired ballroom dancer, had entered the nursing home after he was found lying on the floor of his home after a fall, per CBS News' report.

But just 75 days after meeting his daughter, Nicholas moved into Shrodes' home where she cares for him full-time and they are getting to know each other.

"It's the hardest thing. It's the most worthwhile thing. It's the most incredible miracle I've ever had the privilege to live out," she told CBS News. "I'm living the dream."

Full Article & Source:
Woman Finds Biological Father in Nursing Home 56 Years After Adoption — And Now She Cares for Him