Saturday, August 14, 2004

480-pound woman dies after six years on couch
By Pat Moore

Red comments by the King of Peru

Thursday, August 12, 2004

She lived in filth, so large she couldn't move from her sofa, even to use the bathroom.
Even to use the bathroom! Six years of doody and peepee and sweat and skin and oh boy...
Early Wednesday, still fused to the couch, Gayle Laverne Grinds died following a six-hour effort by rescue workers who struggled to lift the 480-pound woman and get her to a Martin County hospital.
I'm sorry she died and all but HOLY MOTHER OF GOD SIX YEARS! Six years of poo-poo and wee-wee! Argh...
Unable to separate the skin of the 39-year-old woman from her sofa, 12 Martin County Fire-Rescue workers slid both onto a trailer and hauled her behind a pickup to Martin Memorial Hospital South. She died a short time later.
Somehow I knew a trailer and a pickup truck would be part of this story.
Sheriff's investigators questioned how Grinds lived in such conditions without more help from family or authorities.
Somebody liked her this way, all fused to the sofa and stuff.
"We're not treating her death as suspicious at this point, but we do have an investigation started because the circumstances surrounding her death are so unusual," Martin Sheriff's Sgt. Jenell Atlas said.
Somebody bought the food and put it close enough to her.
The Treasure Coast medical examiner performed an autopsy of the 4-foot-10 woman and listed her cause of death as "morbid obesity," officials said. Results of toxicology tests will take several weeks.
Nobody ever even got a hose and squirted her down.
"I tried to take care of her the best I could," said 54-year-old Herman Thomas, who lived with Grinds in the duplex apartment in Golden Gate, south of Stuart. "I tried to get her to get up, but it wouldn't do no good."
Four feet ten inches tall, four hundred and eighty pounds. She was a beach ball.
He said the woman that he called his wife hadn't been off the couch for six years. No record of their marriage could be found.
Yeah, I bet she ate it.
"I wish I could have pulled her off the couch, but she wouldn't let me," he said, covering his face and sobbing.
Sounds like someone covering his ass and getting his story straight.
Inside the home, the floor and walls were matted with feces, and trash was strewn across the floors, some which were bare concrete. Furniture was toppled, and pictures were knocked off walls.
Floor and walls matted with feces, but what about the ceiling? You're just not trying, folks.
Atlas said sheriff's detectives will look for potential "negligence issues" related to her care and death.
"We want to know what happened to her, how she ended up this way, and is she supposed to have been receiving any care," she said.
Hmmm.... public assistance check every month, get her some big snacks at the Wal-Mart and it's off to O.T.B.
Rescue workers were called to the home at 8:44 p.m. Tuesday by Grinds' brother and his girlfriend, who reported the woman had trouble breathing and "emphysema problems." The crew initially tried to remove her from the couch, but the pain was too excruciating.
Well where have these two been for the last six years?
Workers wore protective clothing and installed large air handling hoses to ventilate the horrendous odor emitting from the home while trying to figure out how to get the woman and her couch to the hospital.
I guess you'd have to soak the sofa and the woman in a large pool or something then start cutting them apart.
The street in front of the row of duplex apartments turned into a makeshift construction site as rescue crews used hammers and chain saws to build a large wooden stretcher with handles cut around the perimeter so firefighters could lift the woman and the couch, Martin County Fire-Rescue District Chief Jim Loffredo said.
Morbidly obese people that don't bathe have maggots in the folds of their skin.
After several failed attempts, including building one plywood plank that was too small to hold her, workers removed sliding glass patio doors at the back of the home, leaving a 6-foot opening large enough to get her out.
They could have helicoptered her and the sofa to the nearest swimming pool.
They slid the couch with her on it onto the larger wooden plank supported by 2-by-4 boards, which were slid onto a utility trailer.
"We couldn't get her in the ambulance," Loffredo said.
That's the line that's sticking to me from this article. STILL FUSED.
The trailer was hooked to the back of a pickup, leaving the scene sometime after 2 a.m., witnesses said. Grinds died at 3:12 a.m., still attached to the couch, officials said.
They got the time of death from London's famous Big Ben, convieniently located on her wrist.
Neighbors who watched the lengthy rescue effort said they had never seen Grinds out of the home.
Well, not for six years anyway.
Jerry Thomas, who lives across the street for six years, said he has seen young girls at the home on occasion but never knew Grinds was inside.
Couldn't they smell it? Didn't they notice the nightly truck deliveries by Domino's, Pizza Hut, Iowa Steak?
"All we knew was the old man lived there," Thomas said. "I had no idea a woman ever lived in that house. Apparently she'd been on that couch a long time."
Unidentified relatives expressed anger at the scene.
"Geez, hon, we ain't seen old fat Gayle in, let's see, it's been at least six fucking years! Let's go visit and ask her if she smells that stench we've been smelling for about, oh, five and a half years now... Oh my, God! Gayle! Oh sweet Jesus, you're FUSED TO THE COUCH BY YOUR OWN SKIN!"
"Family members are upset.... It's a difficult position," Martin County Fire-Rescue specialist Chris Wisniewski said.
It's a difficult last name too, Chris.
Clifford Grinds, who is believed to be Gayle Grinds' brother, refused comment and slammed a door when contacted by a reporter at his Hobe Sound home Wednesday afternoon.
Coffee Grinds was also unavailable for comment, saying she felt "drained" after the events had unfolded.
Court records show Gayle Grinds cared for a young niece and nephew after the death of her sister in 1992. Those children are now 19 and 15, but their whereabouts were unclear Wednesday.
"We are used to going to people's houses when things are at their worst... and that's fine, we're trained for it," Atlas said. "But there is no warning for something like this."
Like maybe the smell from a mile away?
Atlas said a community policing deputy who worked the neighborhood a few years ago knew of Grinds but never had any dealings with her, and no deputy had ever been called inside the home.
...although a task force dealing with the disappearance of 18 Good Humor Ice Cream men and their distinctive delivery trucks was interested in questioning her.
In June 2003, 911 dispatchers received a call from the home for medical assistance, but Martin County Fire Chief Tom Billington said he could not reveal the nature of that call, citing federal medical privacy laws and the ongoing investigation.
Sound like some major ass-covering going on there, too.
The Department of Children and Families can intervene to help adults who are unable to care for themselves, but DCF officials said Wednesday they did not know about Grinds.
Nor did they care.
Christine Demetriades, agency spokeswoman for the Treasure Coast, said DCF has no record of calls to the abuse hot line or reports before she died.

And that settles it. Jesus, FUSED TO THE COUCH. I'm going on a diet like last week, man.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

6 years? what the hell? I have to get up after 2 hours! How do you manage to stay on the couch for 6 years? How do you let yourself get that way and stay content with it? OMG ... that poor woman!

April 4, 2007 at 3:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great article! Thanks.

August 18, 2007 at 10:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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August 19, 2007 at 3:26 AM  
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September 10, 2007 at 8:22 PM  

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