Alzheimer's Patient Found Abandoned In Airport After Daughter Says She's 'Done' With Him

The 80-year-old man “was very confused about general details of his life,” said police.

November 15, 2018
Jerry Ellingsen [WCNC screenshot]

Jerry Ellingsen [WCNC screenshot]

Jerry Ellingsen [WCNC screenshot]

By: Aaron Rasmussen

DENVER, CO — An elderly man suffering Alzheimer’s disease was put on a plane, flown across the country, and abandoned after both his daughter and wife refused to care for him.

WCNC reported that a United Airlines supervisor called police upon discovering Jerry Ellingsen, 80, wandering near the ticket counters at the sprawling Denver International Airport with his small dog in tow.

“He was very confused about general details of his life, [including] where he was at, where he was coming from, who he was coming to visit, and his family members’ names,” an officer noted in a report.

Authorities were able to get in touch with Ellingsen’s daughter, Pamela Roth, after they checked records to see who had helped him board his one-way flight to Colorado from Fort Meyers, Florida.

But when cops spoke with Roth, she told them she was “done with her father” and instructed them not to contact her again.

According to the police report, Roth, who had power of attorney over Ellingsen, wanted her dad to go live with his wife, Jackie, at her home out West.

Just one day before the senior got on the plane, Roth texted Ellingsen's wife: “My dad and Corky [the dog] will arrive on a flight in Denver tomorrow afternoon,” she wrote.

The Colorado woman refused to pick up her husband at the airport, including after she was contacted by cops, although she later agreed to take in the dog.

“I have no use for him,” she told a Denver detective, explaining, “I mean, a man that wants to kill me, come on. I don’t want to live with him.”

“I have no use for him,” she told a Denver detective, explaining, “I mean, a man that wants to kill me, come on. I don’t want to live with him.”

The wife also shared with police a text from Ellingsen’s daughter, which read: “If you need to drop my dad at a homeless shelter, it’s fine. I just want him to have a roof over his head. Please.”

Out of options, police called an ambulance, and Ellingsen was taken to University of Colorado Hospital, which is required by law to care for at-risk adults who have nowhere else to go.

After the Lee County Sheriff’s Office in Florida investigated the potential elder-abuse case, prosecutors declined to press charges against Roth, who works for a senior home-care company, because evidence was “legally insufficient.”

“I cannot believe they did that. I’m horrified," said Ellingsen’s niece, Kari McConnell. "I’m disappointed that somebody can even be that low to do that to their father.”

Both Ellingsen’s daughter and his wife refused to comment on the story.

Read more: WCNC

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