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Old 09-20-2018, 11:34 AM   #91
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Sanders? that you? You need to reply to your email sometime lol
hit me up sometimes at rarjacob@gmail.com
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Old 08-02-2019, 10:11 PM   #92
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Old 01-03-2021, 09:58 PM   #93
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No, there is no update (that I'm aware of) re: GP Jr., but I wanted to respond to this particular thread, given that this seems to be the most thorough & responded-to thread on this board re: this well-known UM MP case.

GP Jr. is definitely one of the saddest UM segment in the series. It's very unfortunate that he was mis-diagnosed for so long, that he couldn't hold down a job due to this disability, and that the last time his father saw him (at the group home) it was obvious that GP wanted to come home.

I completely understand why the parents didn't have GP living with them. He couldn't function well, and as such would need constant care that they probably couldn't provide. My understanding is that it is financially less expensive to place someone in a group home (which in some cases is state-run) than to hire 24-hour care for a person at a residence/private home. In any case, it was heart-breaking seeing the parents interviewed (especially the father, who is now deceased); they both were very likeable & were obviously very concerned for their son.

I suspect that GP just wandered out of the group home & ended up homeless somewhere, or possibly ended up in a shelter/another group home. However, it's unfortunately more likely that he's deceased. I'm not surprised he has never been found. I.e., since he himself wouldn't have been able to contact his parents & since he probably didn't have any contact information (for his family) on his person, it seems evident that he probably just slipped through the cracks somewhere. Very tragic.

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Old 01-06-2021, 12:56 AM   #94
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I completely understand why the parents didn't have GP living with them. He couldn't function well, and as such would need constant care that they probably couldn't provide. My understanding is that it is financially less expensive to place someone in a group home (which in some cases is state-run) than to hire 24-hour care for a person at a residence/private home.
Not just that, but it's often advantageous for both the family and the patient to get in ASAP because there is generally limited availability. It's also best if there isn't a plan for family/homecare to continue with a relative that they're in a home earlier rather than later for similar reasons. Frequently, the patients do better because they gain more of a sense of independence and the

He could have (and likely did) stay behind in Michigan because the process would have started over if he was a new resident of FL.

The whole idea of "group homes" had a bit of a stigma at that time - more so than they do now. I think they absolutely made the right choice and what happened is unfortunate, but not the parents' fault at all.

The parents and facility could have assumed that his previous runaway incident was a on-off due to bad meds. Though imo it sounds like Gordon impulsively wanted to have some fun, not visit his brother like he said - the reason given sounds more like a "Oops I'm caught, if I say this I won't be in trouble" answer since he wasn't caught traveling - he was off stealing a car and then trying to teach a class.

I agree that he's likely deceased -"high functioning autism" at the time of his diagnosis did not mean what it does now and he clearly wouldn't have the "street sense" to survive.

I used to think he was possibly still alive but when I recently rewatched the segment, all the video footage of Gordon showed a person who is used to responding to prompts and was confused when confronted with unfamiliar prompts. I think Gordon would struggle in the real world when confronted with a lot of unfamiliar situations - especially since he's always had someone caring for him and guiding him through life.

I've seen people compare Gordon to the man found working on a farm, but as the video clearly showed - following simple instructions was beyond his capabilities. I don't see Gordon handling working in the fields any better.

IMO, Gordon probably ran away impulsively because he was unhappy but where he got to (the underpass) didn't have an easy way for him to be caught or have an obvious safe space to go to (like a school) and he wouldn't have known what to do from there once the adrenaline/emotions wore off from his initial impulse to escape.
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Old 02-23-2021, 11:19 PM   #95
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In their defense, this was the 80's/early 90's and people didn't know how to deal with autistic people back then and they were often misdiagnosed, as Gordon was, and put on medications that only made them worse. I believe those parents loved their son and did what they felt was best for him. After watching this segment and seeing his parents, I think it's kind of offensive to suggest that they just stuck him in a home because they were self centered and didn't want to have to care for him. They put him in that home for the same reason so many people put an elderly relative in a nursing home. Sometimes they require more care than the family is able to provide.
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Old 05-02-2021, 09:50 AM   #96
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This was such a heartbreaking case -perhaps the saddest I've seen on UM. You could see the depth of love that both parents had for their son and the father's testimony of his last encounter with him, when he tried to jump in his father's car as he departed, was absolutely heartbreaking. I was desperately hoping for an update at the end saying that he'd been found but, sadly, no such luck

I don't fault the parents for placing him in a home. It was clear that they were given professional advice to do so and were trying to act out of what they thought was best for his well-being. One can legitimately argue whether the professional advice they received was the best or not -there are probably arguments that can be made on both sides -but the parents themselves wanted only the best for their son. You could see that it anguished them to be separated from him

It's sad there was so much ignorance and misinformation around about autism around back then (and still is now, although to a lesser extent). As someone who is mildly autistic, I know that my family and I encountered some of this lack of knowledge during that period of time as well. To their great credit, my parents actually ignored some of the advice they were given because it didn't sit right with them and they were proved correct and I managed to flourish. But I know it is a delicate balance to strike and it seemed that this family was trying so hard to find the right path that would make their son happy and make him prosper

I do wonder about the wisdom of the care facility in question not allowing the family to visit for two months while the patient got settled in. I can understand the logic behind it -seeing the family might confuse the patient and make them homesick, etc., but on the other hand it might have helped to see and be in contact with a familiar face, to have that reassuring presence, to know that they were close by on hand if needed. If the patient was having problems with the staff or fellow patients, a family member may have been the only one whom the patient would have been able to confide in or who would know how to ask the right questions to ascertain that information. Again, it's a delicate balance, I guess

Sadly, as much as I'd like to hope that Gordon is somehow in a home/mental hospital/homeless shelter somewhere, I think it's a remote possibility. I'm not sure also he'd have the life and communication skills that would enable him to be living independently and, if he was homeless, I'd be pessimistic about his chances of living on the street for this length of time. Stranger things have happened, though

If he is alive, though, I do hope he's managed to find some happiness or peace in some way and that he'll be able to cross paths with the surviving members of his family in some way.
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Old 05-02-2021, 01:41 PM   #97
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This was such a heartbreaking case -perhaps the saddest I've seen on UM. You could see the depth of love that both parents had for their son and the father's testimony of his last encounter with him, when he tried to jump in his father's car as he departed, was absolutely heartbreaking. I was desperately hoping for an update at the end saying that he'd been found but, sadly, no such luck

I don't fault the parents for placing him in a home. It was clear that they were given professional advice to do so and were trying to act out of what they thought was best for his well-being. One can legitimately argue whether the professional advice they received was the best or not -there are probably arguments that can be made on both sides -but the parents themselves wanted only the best for their son. You could see that it anguished them to be separated from him

It's sad there was so much ignorance and misinformation around about autism around back then (and still is now, although to a lesser extent). As someone who is mildly autistic, I know that my family and I encountered some of this lack of knowledge during that period of time as well. To their great credit, my parents actually ignored some of the advice they were given because it didn't sit right with them and they were proved correct and I managed to flourish. But I know it is a delicate balance to strike and it seemed that this family was trying so hard to find the right path that would make their son happy and make him prosper

I do wonder about the wisdom of the care facility in question not allowing the family to visit for two months while the patient got settled in. I can understand the logic behind it -seeing the family might confuse the patient and make them homesick, etc., but on the other hand it might have helped to see and be in contact with a familiar face, to have that reassuring presence, to know that they were close by on hand if needed. If the patient was having problems with the staff or fellow patients, a family member may have been the only one whom the patient would have been able to confide in or who would know how to ask the right questions to ascertain that information. Again, it's a delicate balance, I guess

Sadly, as much as I'd like to hope that Gordon is somehow in a home/mental hospital/homeless shelter somewhere, I think it's a remote possibility. I'm not sure also he'd have the life and communication skills that would enable him to be living independently and, if he was homeless, I'd be pessimistic about his chances of living on the street for this length of time. Stranger things have happened, though

If he is alive, though, I do hope he's managed to find some happiness or peace in some way and that he'll be able to cross paths with the surviving members of his family in some way.
I think some people judge because they are eying the situation through late 2000 - 2010+ eyes. GP disappeared in 1989 and autism wasn't even fully understood at the time. His parents were going by what they were told was the best thing for their son. At that time, it probably was the best thing. Today...maybe not so much, but we also don't have all the facts. We weren't there. We don't know.

As for why the parents kept him in FL, sometimes with DD folks change like moving could be a major shock to the system. For all we know, there were family members still in the area i.e. at least one brother or other relative. Maybe the area of FL they were moving to didn't have a facility that could take Gordon or the waiting period was several months to a year.

We just don't know. We can make judgements from our chairs and laptops, but folks need to keep in mind 1989 is not 2021.

I do agree that GP is unfortunately deceased.
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Old 05-03-2021, 12:08 AM   #98
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If he was able to hitchhike for a while itís too bad no one just took him to a police station after surely being recognized as a runaway who clearly wasnít capable of being on his own. I donít know how you pick up Gordon Page on the side of the street, who probably didnít have a dime on him or any belongings and drop him off again on the side of the road. Perhaps though he was high functioning enough that it wasnít obvious he was out of his element.

What a shame if someone drove him to Chicago or Detroit as is speculated and dropped him off alone there.
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Old 05-03-2021, 08:40 AM   #99
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If he was able to hitchhike for a while itís too bad no one just took him to a police station after surely being recognized as a runaway who clearly wasnít capable of being on his own. I donít know how you pick up Gordon Page on the side of the street, who probably didnít have a dime on him or any belongings and drop him off again on the side of the road. Perhaps though he was high functioning enough that it wasnít obvious he was out of his element.

What a shame if someone drove him to Chicago or Detroit as is speculated and dropped him off alone there.
Driving to either city would be a commitment. It would take 2 1/2 hours to reach Detroit and a little over 3 hours to reach Chicago by car. Keep in mind that he was spotted hitchhiking at around 1:00 in the morning. So the chances of running in to a Good Samaritan willing to drive that far in the middle of the night? That's hard to wrap my mind around.
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Old 05-03-2021, 09:10 AM   #100
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Such a sad case. Unfortunately, I think it's more likely than not that he's deceased.
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Old 05-03-2021, 10:34 AM   #101
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I think some people judge because they are eying the situation through late 2000 - 2010+ eyes. GP disappeared in 1989 and autism wasn't even fully understood at the time.

We just don't know. We can make judgements from our chairs and laptops, but folks need to keep in mind 1989 is not 2021.
Not to take away from these entirely correct thoughts, but didn't 1989-era doctors know that it's a terrible idea to prescribe Ritalin AND valium, especially to anyone already facing huge challenges?! Whoever was responsible for this deserved a nice lawsuit.
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Old 05-12-2021, 01:03 PM   #102
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Not to take away from these entirely correct thoughts, but didn't 1989-era doctors know that it's a terrible idea to prescribe Ritalin AND valium, especially to anyone already facing huge challenges?! Whoever was responsible for this deserved a nice lawsuit.
When I heard this I was like....whaaaat? An upper AND a downer? No wonder Gordon was never the same.

Time is a great teacher, but looking at this episode now, and as a special education teacher who works with older students in transition, all I could think was why was there not someone coupled with him at the store or other employment place to guide and mentor him?

As hard as it is, parents are encouraged to place their DD adult children in a group home BEFORE they pass away or it is a one two whammy - parents gone or unable to care for them AND a new home. I have heard stories of 70 year old (and up) carrying their 45 (and up) year adult kids around (to bathe, to dress, in and out of cars) and it is heartbreaking and dangerous. I get it, no one can take care of your kids like you, but it gets ridiculous. Group homes are not all Dickens - like, many of them are quite nice and loving.

Sadly, I, too, think GG has passed. Probably from either starvation or exposure.
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