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August 7, 2005

Michael Schiavo - Guardian of the Year?

Topics: News

In another public miscarriage of justice, Michael Schiavo was called a "hero" last Friday by the Florida State Guardianship Association for ending his wife's life by withholding food and water [more]. The organization gave Schiavo its Guardian of the Year Award.

In a rare public appearance, Schiavo, 42, modestly accepted the award at the association's 18th annual conference at the Doral Golf Resort & Spa west of Miami.

"As you know," he said, "I'm not much of a speechmaker. I don't talk much. But on behalf of my wife Theresa, I thank you."

Brother Paul O'Donnell, a Franciscan friar who serves as the Schindler family spokesman, was quoted in the Orlando Sentinel. "Oh, my God, that's offensive," he said. "Michael Schiavo ... basically let her rot."

State Rep. Dennis Baxley, R-Ocala, who supported legislation that would limite withdrawl of food and water from the disabled called the recognition "ironic."

"There were a lot of issues that raised some questions about his credibility to act in her (Terri Schiavo's) best interest," Baxley was quoted as saying.

Fight4Terri posted this letter in response to the award:

Dear Mr. Goodman,

As Bob and Mary Schindler's former attorney, I have a passing fair familiarity with the facts of Michael Schiavo's conduct as a guardian for Terri Schiavo.

Did you know that FOR TWELVE YEARS -- from 1990 until 2002 -- Mr. Schiavo steadfastly refused to take the statutorily-mandated training all private guardians must undergo? Did you know his refusal came in the face of annual demands from the Clerk's office that he do so?

Did you also know that Mr. Schiavo did not file annual reports and plans in a timely fashion year after year and, for at least two years, filed no report and plan at all?

Did you know that when Mr. Schiavo did grudgingly and belatedly file plans -- there was no plan at all for her improvement?

Did you know the experimental surgical treatment that you specifically mentioned as praiseworthy occurred in NOVEMBER, 1990? Did you know that after the summer of 1992, Terri never received another minute of therapy of any kind -- including routine physical therapy -- up until the moment of her death, on Mr. Schiavo's orders?

These are facts documented in the court file, Mr. Goodman. They are not unwarranted "attacks" on Mr. Schiavo, simply facts that anyone who makes an effort can discover. The further fact that the Court did not ever sanction Mr. Schiavo for his shortcomings as a guardian is more a testament to an overloaded court docket than a testament to Mr. Schiavo's dedication.

Don't you think honoring Mr. Schiavo as "Guardian of the Year" is insulting to the thousands of honest, hard-working guardians who follow Florida law in act and spirit? There is much more to being a guardian than insisting on the ward's death, Mr. Goodman.

I would like to know how many of the Florida guardians voted on this year's award. Was it the entire membership or a committee of a handful of people?

Please do me the honor of a reply.

Pat Anderson
7116 Gulf Boulevard
Suite D
St. Pete Beach, FL 33706

See Fight4Terri for several more responses.

Update:

Doral, FL (LifeNews.com) -- Though his objective as her legal guardian was to end Terri Schiavo's life, Terri's estranged husband Michael received an award from a Florida guardianship group for his decision-making as the person charged with determining the disabled woman's fate. .... more

ACTION: Send your thoughts on Michael's award to Florida State Guardianship Association, PO Box 13978, Tallahassee, FL, 32317 or call (850) 656-8848 or fax (850) 656-3038. You can send an email note to the group by filling out this form.

Posted by tim at August 7, 2005 6:09 PM


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Comments

The state of Florida is crazy and mixed up. It seems that if you are a judge you will get honoured because you condemn the innocent to death, and turn a blind eye to the peccadillos of the husband and guardian. However, if you are the guardian who has managed to skim the estate of the ward, and actually manage to get the state to approve her death by starvation and dehydration then you get an award because you are seen to be professional. Unbelievable.

Florida, especially Pinellas County has a bad reputation where guardianship is concerned. The Guardians association of Florida has just sealed that bad reputation through its nomination and award to Michael Schiavo.

They chose to give this award because Schiavo stuck to "carrying out his ward's wishes". The problem with that reason happens to be that we do not know for certain that Terri ever made the comments in the first place.

It is strange how a man who cannot remember his mother's name, when he was married or even when he arrived in Florida, can after a period of ten years suddenly remember a conversation that allegedly took place in which the ward was supposed to have stated that she would not want to be on "life support". It is equally strange that the brother and sister in law only came forward at the point when it looked like Michael Schiavo had screwed up to the point that his evidence was shown to be not believable.

The guardians in Florida have a reputation that is not very savourary. There are professional guardians who go around to the old age homes specifically to look for the wealthy elderly people who do not seem to have relatives to care for them. These elderly people make good targets for the guardians who then proceed to have them declared incompetent so that they can get control of their estates. Once they have control then they go ahead with fleecing the estate before starting the process to put the ward to death through a slow process of starvation by neglect.

Posted by: Maggie4Life [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 8, 2005 4:57 AM

Interesting how he comes out of hiding when he gets public acclaim. Wonder if a cash prize was included...

Posted by: thedegu [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 9, 2005 11:08 PM

I think it's pretty disgusting that Michael Schiavo is Guardian of the Year. He basically denied Terri her human rights and for this he gets an award. I just don't understand this concept.

Posted by: Bella [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 15, 2005 1:46 PM