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April 17, 2005

Update: Mae Magouirk is Recovering

Topics: News

Ken Mullinaux has emailed us an update on the condition of his aunt, Mae Magourik, who is recovering after being rescued from a hospice on April 9. He writes,

We are hoping to start Mae on some real food either Sunday or Monday, says Dr. Aqel. She had quite a bit of a fluid buildup in her lungs but that problem was resolved yesterday.

She is still as weak as a new born kitten but increasingly coherent...I asked her today what was the first thing she wanted to eat when she was able and she smiled at me and said "a good chicken sandwich with lots of mayonnaise.

Ken is greatly encouraged that the family is talking and beginning to work toward a long-term solution but remains concerned that Mae's brother and sister have no legal standing related to Mae's guardianship.

In response to questions and inquiries, Ken has provided this more detailed description of Mae's status:

Mae's mental condition/past and present

Mae has been on Morphine, Atavin from March 13 until April 9. It has had a devastating effect on her lucidity but one which we believe is temporary.

The same was true with my own Mother who we induced into a coma from October 12, 2002 until mid December 2002 while she was at UAB and suffering from a much worse case of the same condition.
With my Mom, Dr. Aqel did so for the purpose of alleviating the intense pain which occurs with a severe dissection as well as to make Mom as physically still as possible so homeostasis might occur and thus prevent her aorta from rupturing. It took Mom a full month from the time she was taken off the morphine until she her mental facilities were in order.

Mae has been off all major pain killers since last Tuesday.

She is still very fatigued yet her mental senses are doing better as each day progresses. Today, was my first day to be with her since my cousin Shane Magouirk has taken the lead. He is co-guardian with Beth, his older sister and he is spending the weekend in Birmingham. My family met with him in Mae's room today at 11:00 CST.

Observations of Mae in CCU

Mae continues to recognize us and individually greets us.

She is having difficulty speaking in that a nasal feeding tube is down her throat. Also, the lack of proper hydration for so long while at the Hospice LaGrange has had a deleterious effect on her throat.

Yet, she greets us and answers questions in a whisper. I was interested to see if she could comprehend and execute a request and she did so today. I asked her if Lonnie Ruth was in the room. She opened her eyes and stated yes. I then said: "Aunt Mae, would you please point your finger at Lonnie? She opened her eyes again and looked at me and around the room and pointed directly at my Mom. I applauded and she looked back at me and smiled. I could have cried with joy.

Health outlook

Her blood pressure was better than mine. It was 138/77 with a pulse of 68. Her condition remains at STABLE.

She is still on several IV's and a feeding tube. I was told she is no longer on morphine yet they anticipate giving her a mild pain killer for localized pain in her neck. They are hoping to introduce orally administered liquids, broth and jello tomorrow but the feeding tube will stay in place for now.

Medical prognosis

Although Shane has opened the visitation period for all members of our family, I have not been privy to any detailed medical information on her condition or prognosis. While I am thankful that my cousin has shown such largesse in allowing us to have open visitation with Mae, I am still very circumspect at the entire affair. WE MUST HAVE FULL MEDICAL ACCESS AND TOTAL INVOLVEMENT IN HER MEDICAL DECISION MAKING.

Future of further court proceedings

Therefore, while we will remain gracious to our Ga. relations, and somewhat restrain ourselves from overtly proactive media relations for the time at hand. However, I am advising my Uncle and Mother to go forth with the formal motion which lays at the table of the new Judge, State Superior Court Judge Jeanette Little, who is a respected jurist, member of the Georgia bar and a decent person.

This is the motion to formalize via court mandate full and equal visitation for our full family and full access to all medical information. I still believe since a clear and present conflict of interest exists in terms of Beth Gaddy and her two siblings being the sole benefactors of her estate, I feel at the least that we should file a motion for a 50-50 guardianship between Gaddy-Magouirk and Mullinax-McLeod.

While things are quiet now, it is reminiscent of the quiet on the Maginot Line in France circa 1940. If Mae has a medical crisis or a turn for the worse, what would prevent Beth from assuming her domineering and absolute control.

I feel a 50-50 guardianship is appropriate in light of her conflict of being both in control of all medical conditions and being one of the major beneficiaries of Mae's assets when she dies. For just as Michael Shiavo, Beth stands to benefit financially when her grandmother dies.

Posted by tim at April 17, 2005 2:09 AM

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I think Ken is right to be cautious and to be thinking in terms of a need for a long-term guardian for Mae who _didn't_ try to dehydrate her to death.

By the way, Mae's recovery here makes it clear that, if Dr. Stout or anyone at the hospice thought she was just "shutting down" and that they were merely "allowing nature to take its course," they were _wrong_. Obviously she was only "dying" in hospice because she wasn't getting enough nutrition and hydration. So here she is asking for a chicken sandwich!

Posted by: Lydia at April 18, 2005 7:11 AM

Sounds like things are looking up. Congrats to all involved!


Posted by: RightWingRocker at April 18, 2005 12:40 PM