The reason I am writing is because of the total lack of compassion that the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s Office exhibited recently, when we lost my father-in-law.
He was a World War II prisoner of war who was wounded and spent six months in a Nazi prison in Germany. He was 95 years old and had lived a full, blessed life. He had been suffering with health issues and was simply tired of the fight. He had expressed his medical wishes to my sister-in-law and included her on his medical power of attorney, which he considered to be his decision not to resuscitate.
When the paramedics picked him up, my husband was on the phone with my sister-in-law who told him and the paramedics not to perform CPR. He was rushed to the Memorial Hermann emergency room and the doctor phoned my husband who said that we wanted him to be made comfortable. The doctor indicated time was of the essence and we needed to get there quickly. Soon after we arrived, he was made comfortable and passed.
We waited in the ER for another hour or so when two deputies came and interrogated my husband. After interrogating him, they implied to him that he could be sent to prison since there was no DNR signed by his 95-year-old father. In the meantime, two other deputies were sent to my mother-in-law’s house to interrogate her. She is 92 with dementia. Not knowing about the second pair of deputies we finally were allowed to leave the ER and headed to my mother-in-law’s house to tell her that her husband had passed.
Upon arrival we discovered through the caregiver that not only had the deputies told her of the passing, the deputies had asked her many questions that she could not answer. When they finally realized that she could not answer, they left but promised to return in the morning.
As I realize that every death requires investigation, I do not believe that this is appropriate. First, my husband should never have been threatened with being sent to prison after losing his father.
And second, my mother-in-law should have been allowed to hear of her husband’s passing from her family members, not by the sheriff’s department. At this point, the damage is done, but I sure hope that in the future, the procedures are revised so as not to be so insensitive.