A Sister’s Love For Her Brother Knows No Boundaries

“Keep doing what you’re doing, St. Patrick Center. Be advocates for your clients, ask questions and continue to save lives.”

Dutch was the fourth child of nine, and when they began their lives in Webster Groves, the family didn’t know that five of the nine siblings would be diagnosed with early-onset dementia. Susan, who now cares for one of her sisters in Pennsylvania, recently came to the rescue of Dutch when he was found in St. Louis, after going missing for five months.

What happened? “Dutch’s dementia diagnosis a few years ago devastated him,” Susan said. He lost his job, they all lost their dad and Dutch began wandering the country for work and other pursuits, while his dementia got worse. “We think he ended up in St. Louis because that’s where he was born.”

Police found Dutch in a parking lot—his face covered in cuts and bruises. He was not oriented to time or place but could tell staff who he was and that he had nowhere to go. Enter St. Patrick Center’s Hospital to Housing partnership program with Saint Louis University Hospital. When Dutch tested negative for alcohol and drugs, our case managers advocated on his behalf. His worsening medical and psychiatric issues were discovered and the search for his support system began.

“I was overjoyed when my brother was found, especially after failed missing person reports and private investigators.” Susan and a nephew hit the road to pick up Dutch and take him to Pennsylvania. “It was a rough ride back and a tough few weeks at my home.” Dutch is now in a Pittsburgh residential care facility and Susan hopes to move him to a better place soon, closer to her. “We got our brother back. He is safe and cared for, and we are so grateful.”

Published April 20, 2021