Monday, January 7, 2008

Clara & The Wild Goose Chase

My mother, Clara Fernandez was abducted on August 21, 2004. Later ,when we realized she wasn't coming ***back, we called the Monroe County Sheriff's Department to reported Clara missing, [according to my notes Sheriff's Deputy Morfi answered the call ] and we were told that the report had to be called in to the place where the victim was to be found.

So we got in our car and drove ten (10) hours non stop with my anxious 87 year old father, [who had never been separated from his wife in 58 years of marriage[, to Polk County Florida, where we met with Deputy K.Thompson of Bartow. He told us; "No, No, No, you have been misinformed," the crime has to be reported at the place where it was committed.

So we got in our car and drove back home to Key West, [another 10 hour trip], and called the Monroe County Sheriff's office. We were then told that they did not have any evidence of a crime being committed, and refused to document the crime scene or take a report and were referred us to the DCF.

So we filed two (2) reports with the DCF at once informing Mr. Scotty Baird that my father, Dr. A. J. Fernandez, was very depressed about his wife missing and asked the DCF for help in getting her back home.

Before her abduction, and according to Clara's doctor; "There have been no recent has been good. Past Medical History: UNREMARKABLE over the past several months." -Dr.Nancy Kaplitz, Neurologist, June 17, 2004 .

In November, not quite three months after she was taken, Clara was drugged and left alone in a hotel room where she fell until paramedics discovered her and took her to the hospital for emergency neurosurgery.

At the hospital Dr. Fernandez wrote a letter and informed hospital staff that he was the husband of Clara G. Fernandez, and he faxed the social worker a copy of advance directives, POA, and asked that Clara only be released to him.

The next day, Clara was visited by a DCF Miami-Dade County case worker named Susan Stafford. Ms.Stafford somehow overruled the legal documents set in place by Dr. Fernandez, and his rights to continue to exercise legal custody over his wife were ignored. In all of the bulldozing of protocol she did NOT inform Dr. Fernandez of his wife's pending release and looked the other way when unauthorized third parties took Clara out of Baptist Hospital to other various unknown locations.

Clara was moved around between five (5) separate nursing facilities in four different counties in secrecy while Quit Claim Deeds were being executed for the properties in my parents Trust, and the CD's were cashed along with Bond,Stock accounts and then the bank accounts were taken over.

On December 24Th. 2004, Field Investigator Clay Kellam said that she had visited Clara on several occasions, (which turned out not to be true), and that she was fine. Kellam had no knowledge that Clara had ever been removed from Polk County and was fighting for her life after having had cranial surgery and a stroke as a result of her fall due to neglect.

Clay Kellam said the alleged abductors had been cleared of any wrongdoing, I asked for her supervisor and explained to her how Dr. Fernandez had never been separated from his wife, he was not eating and we feared he would die if kept from her. The Supervisor told us how sorry she was but that the DCF had no police powers, and although she sympathized with me and my father,"There was nothing she could do".

Please click to enlarge Document:

Quantum Leap : Medical Case Management Program .-Funded by the Department of Elder Affairs Date of interview 5-1-05 Clara G Fernandez D.O.B. 11-08-07
by Robert Matranga B.A. Administrative Coordinator Case Manager

JUST CHECKING! Medical Case Management Initial Comprehensive Assessment MENTAL STATUS EXAMINATION: [Screen for mood, anxiety, cognition, mental and substance -related disorders..If indicated, assess for suicidology. Briefly describe affect; orientation, judgment memory, insight thoughts, and perceptions. Use mini mental status exam as indicated. State significant prior menial health history among the clients and client's biological family.] Client presents as alert orientated to person recognizes her name able to recall her children's names, Adalberto and Raul! When questioned regarding her spouse she believed he was deceased, the client has had four hospitalizations and four rehabilitation centers. With transfers for one setting to another often an in increase, cognitive deficits and decrease in functional ability can arise."
Signed on 5-03-05 by by Robert Matranga B.A. Administrative Coordinator Case Manager for Quantum Leap funded by the Dept of Elder Affairs

Even though Clara seemed "On A String Being Pulled From One County to Another" -Judge VonHof- 31st August 2005 and according to the same Judge she was "improperly taken" from her home on August 21, 2004. - 15th Judicial Circuit Court Judge Gary L. VonHof August 31st 2005

Judge Richard Payne, Circuit Judge for the Sixteenth Judicial Circuit, Probate Division in Monroe county Case#44-2005-CP-61-K . - Judge Payne reasserts in a ruling -

"Testimony of Clara G. Fernandez having heard, argument of counsel of the respective parties having heard, and the Court being fully advised in the premises,

THE COURT FINDS that Clara Fernandez is a resident of Monroe County, Florida."

Dr. Fernandez was on a hunger strike and spent the last year of his life without knowing what had happened to Clara, the love of his life of 58 years.
Even though his most ardent desire was to see his wife again, he told me; "Ray I don't care if I have to spend every penny I ever made, all I want to do is to see my wife again before I die!"

The Department of Elder Affairs knew that Clara had been led to believe her husband was dead" because they stated so in their report, as well as the detrimental effect of moving her from hospital to hospital was having.

-"the client has had four hospitalizations and four rehabilitation centers. With transfers for one setting to another often an in increase, cognitive deficits and decrease in functional ability can arise."

The Department of Elder Affairs and the Florida DCF knew that Dr. Fernandez was literally and physically dying to see his wife who he had not seen or talk to for 12 months, yet they said; "Wish there was something we could do"!

Dr. Fernandez went to his grave on January 9Th. 2005, three (3) days after Judge Payne ruled that he could be reunited with his wife, yet he had to spend the last year of his life without being able to be with his wife of 58 years with whom the court ruled was "Improperly taken from him ! "

Dr. A.J. Fernandez personally made a impassioned plea to the best of his ability to Sheriff Richard Roth in the parking lot of the Monroe County Sheriff's Department, that was as close to him as he could get to beg for help and Roth shrugged his shoulder and said; "Sorry, nothing I can do!"

The Department of Elder Affairs refused to let Clara know that her husband was alive and that he wanted to see her, the DCF never made any effort to reunite the two before Dr. Fernandez's death.
Now How Cruel is That ?

*After such a terrible ordeal, Clara was picked up by EMS , backed up by West Palm Beach Sheriff Department , she was reunited with her husband Dr. Fernandez for a few priceless moments before his death. The reunification was possible through the hard work of Attorney Adrian Thomas who never gave up, and the sacrifices of myself and other family members. The legal battle to reunite my parents was a personal and family victory. I almost lost everything just to see my parents hold hands and kiss one more time and would I do it all over again if I had to.

I took pictures and made a video slide show of this very momentous occasion never to be seen again, except everyday in my mind.

And now - I would like to share this 3 minute video with all of you.

Please click Here=>> Watch Video of Dr. Fernandez and Clara last Moments together made posible by the Law Firm of Adrian P Thomas

Laurine said.. It was beautiful!!! There was so much love in all of the photos, both between your parents and between you and Judy and your folks. Excellent job.

brwneyegirl34 said ...This song is the most beautiful anniversary song I have ever heard!

LeBalRoyal ....Beautiful!

samudaseraphim ...Beautiful! I love seeing people love each other that much. I hope my husband and I stay that close all our lives. It is so sad though...WHY did they have to be separated?

ziva said... Beautiful,thanks for sharing. May their memory be for a blessing.

Thinker said... What your blog does is exemplify what blogs should do... be a voice for the voiceless, and a powerful one at that.

Aniger said...It renews your hope that marriage can last a life time. Thanks for sharing their story.God Bless,

Late Life Pete said...
This is my first visit to your blog. This is powerful stuff and you are to be commended for making this your mission.

Anonymous said...
I did not realize you could separate a couple legally married, just like that, always thought you need a especial order to do that !

Anonymous said...
this is really sad, who knows how many years this wonderful couple had still together, the saddest part is that the people who are doing this are still free to harm other people

Adrian P Thomas said...
Ray, A fitting tribute to a wonderful woman!Adrian P. Thomas, LL.M., J.D.,

The alleged perpetrator(s) is still doing social work for the state of Florida and steps are being taken in a civil court to take the perpetrators into account

***There exists irrefutable evidence in Clara's own voice that she wished to come back to her home during the earlier stages of her ordeal and was not given the opportunity, or allowed in other words she was held against her will

*ref :According to Catherine C. McNamee a Social Science Analyst at the National Institute of Justice in Attitudes Hinder Investigations ;

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I feel so honored that we can bear witness to this incredible story, thank you so much for your heartfelt words. Clara is blessed to have you as her protector, and your commitment to her defense speaks to the integrity, courage, nobility and compassion in your character. These aspects come through clearly in your writing - and I do hope that one day you will be able to share this story to a wider audience through your writing endeavors.

Thank you for writing for us, and for all your effort and commitment to protecting our elders.