WWII vet allegedly attacked at Queens nursing home

St Albans Veteran Community Living Center in Queens, NY. Photo Credit: Veterans Association

World War II veteran Robert Brogan was supposed to spend the rest of his life pleasantly residing in the New York State Veterans Home at St. Albans in Queens, New York.  The 250-bed facility, especially designed for the care of military veterans, is run by the Health Department.

According to the New York Post, Brogan’s family has claimed the WWII veteran was allegedly attacked and neglected at nursing home.  While the matter is being investigated, no one at the facility can explain what happened to the 87-year-old former Marine.

“It’s been a nightmare,” said Colleen Constantino, Brogan’s daughter.  “I don’t want to see him treated like this.  I want to see him taken care of.”  She explained her father had moved to the nursing home because his dementia had gotten worse and her mother is ill.

A couple of months ago, Brogan was found in another room, lying in a pool of blood and with a huge gash on his head.  He was transported to the Queens Hospital in Jamaica for treatment.  The St. Albans staff could not explain what happened.

At that time, the head nurse had told Brogan’s family they would put alarms on his bed so if he got up, the staff could check on him.

Constantino said last week her father was found on the ground in his own room, bleeding from deep cuts in his arm.  Brogan’s new roommate was the person who reported it to the nursing station, saying only that Brogan needed attention.

Due to his dementia, Brogan cannot recall or communicate how he got hurt.  However, the wounds on his arm look like defensive wounds.  They required 23 stitches.  He had scrapes on his knuckles and bruises on his forehead as well.  It was unclear if a weapon was the cause of the injuries.

After he was treated for the new wounds, Brogan was reluctant to return to his room.  This was especially evident when he saw his roommate.

John Constantino, Jr., Brogan’s son-in-law, said the nursing home transferred the new roommate to another room.

“He seemed very afraid and shaken up,” said his granddaughter, Jessica.  “He kept saying, ‘No, no, no.’”

It also appeared that the alarms installed did not work.  “When we went into the room, we found the battery for the alarm on the floor,” Brogan’s daughter said.  “The safety system they have in place is not working, especially at night when all these incidents occur.”

Although the New York State Health Department has stated they are aware of the incidents and are investigating the matter, John Constantino called the NYPD about the incidents.  An officer directed him to the state attorney general, who has investigated nursing home abuse cases.

Constantino said it was a shame that her father was being treated this way by either some of the residents or staff.  Otherwise, she said there are other employees that are very compassionate and are “good to her father.”  She added that some of the nurses describe Brogan as “a sweetheart.”

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