This is my son Cameron. Cameron has a diagnosis of severe autism, and with that diagnosis, he is unable to express himself verbally. His functioning level is similiar to that of a 2 or 3 year old. He is total care. He has to have assistance with all Activities of Daily Living including bathing, toileting, eating, ect.
I also have another daughter who has moderate autism, and another daughter who is diagnosed with ADHD, and a 5 year old. When Cameron was 8 years old, his lovely grandmother took on the role of guardianship for Cameron as raising him got to be very difficult and overwhelming for me. She wanted to give him the best life that she could, and spend some 1 on 1 time with him. She took care of all of Cameron's medical and educational needs. She didn't just half do it. She made sure that Cameron had the best doctors, and went to the best schools, and made sure that he took all of his medication. Under her care, Cameron was well groomed, and was very content to be with her. When I say she devoted her life to him, she literally did just that.
When Cameron turned 18 the guardianship had to be reapplied for and his grandmother was in the process of doing that . She was also asking the County Board of DD to give her more help/staff to care for Cameron in her home because he was getting bigger and stronger. Since he was turning 18 the County Board kept insisting that she put him in a group home that was medicaid-funded to reduce the cost. His grandmother kept refusing so they took her to court to try to give the guardianship to a court appointed attorney. All of their attorneys were from Cincinnati while she had her own local attorney and fought them court. However, being back in court so many times she ran out of money to keep fighting. She then knew it was a losing battle that she was fighting as they were more powerful so she asked her attorney, who was familiar with the situation, and who was advocating for her, to be the guardian believing that she would be neutral in doing what was in Cameron's best interest. She was convinced that this attorney would be a mediator between her and the County board.
His grandmother finally agreed he could go to a Medicaid funded County home as long as she could be totally involved and visit him everyday or as much as she wanted and to be updated on everything in his life, schooling, medical etc...
Unfortunately, that only lasted until the attorney obtained the guardianship then his grandmother never heard from the attorney/guardian again. The guardian doesn't return phone calls and doesn't speak to her regarding Cameron. In fact, the attorney/guardian listened to some hear say from the providers, and not once did the guardian ask his grandmother if the allegations that were made about her were true. As a result, the guardian banned his grandmother from going to visit Cameron in his home. A letter was sent to her stating that she could only visit him at a recreation center in the presence of the aides.
His grandmother has not had any contact with Cameron since January. Recently, Cameron fled from his home at 5:00am on 5/25/2017, without any shoes on and he was in the rain. He was in the neighborhood of where he resides. Fortunately, this lady recognized from his harness that he was disabled, and called the authorities to come and get Cameron.
It is also being reported that sometimes the aides leave Cameron alone in his home as they don't want to be bothered with him. Whether true or not, Cameron's family should have the privledge to go visit Cameron at any given time, unnannouned, to check on his well being. The guardian is allowing me to make visits as long as I tell the house manager that I'm coming. However, I'm the only one permitted at this time to go visit him.
I live in another city, and that makes it difficult for me to visit him when I feel the need to do so. Therefore, I am on a mission to obtain guardianship of Cameron so that I can move him closer to me, and make visits as often as needed. I also would like for his grandmother to be back into his life, as I'm sure that this is very difficult on Cameron to all of a sudden have no family visiting him.
In order to obtain this guardianship, I need to hire an attorney. The retainer fee for this attorney is $5,000.00. Please make a contribution so that Cameron can have all the support that he needs. Thank you!
- Cynthia Ridgell
- Shiloh Choir
- Eric Toney
- Carolyn Ulmer
- Trina Nelson
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