This article is dedicated to anyone who may grow old in America.
Dean and Amy Sallas had a good life. Dean worked in real estate, buying and selling properties and also renting out units. He had amassed a considerable nest egg, in the realm of about $8 million. Amy taught school up until a stroke left her with some memory loss, at which point she took retirement. Her pension is in the neighborhood of $8,000 a month.
A series of events, launched by her adult children who wished to be able to access her pension, resulted in a guardian being appointed, over the objections of Dean. At that point, the story turns distinctly dark.
After a number of years, the guardian (Charles Golbert of the Public Guardian office) decided unilaterally to remove Amy from her home and marriage of over 50 years, without her agreement or the agreement of her husband. Amy was taken by force and put into a nursing home in 2019. There were no verified allegations of abuse of Amy by Dean.
Unilaterally, the guardian also decided to block any contact between Amy and Dean. Nonetheless, Dean showed up for her birthday in April of 2021 at Belmont Village which is located in Buffalo Grove, Illinois. After a pleasant meal, he was suddenly collared by security and told to leave.
As he is not permitted to call his wife (and she has no phone available to call him), I volunteered to call her and speak with her. I found Amy Sallas to be bright, communicative and simply longing for contact with Dean. “I miss him so much,” she confided in me. “It’s like a part of me is missing.”
After speaking with her twice, my subsequent calls to her were blocked by Belmont Village, which informed me that I was not allowed to speak with her and that “no one from the outside could communicate with her,” on orders of the guardian.