Briarcliff Responds; Another Christmas Gift Missing - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Briarcliff Responds; Another Christmas Gift Missing

Two local women are missing their Christmas gifts. They just disappeared. And both women live in the same East Texas nursing home.

Last week we told you about Shirley Jackson and her $100 worth of her gifts sent by her daughter that went missing, after they were delivered to Briarcliff Health Center in Tyler. And since then another woman's family has come forward and said the same thing happened to them.

The nursing home administration wasn't talking at first, but they are now.

In a written statement a Briarcliff administrator said, "We acknowledge that the package Ms. Jackson's daughter sent her cannot be located."

We knew that last week when the family told us.

"My sister Lisa talked to someone at Briarcliff.  They said, 'Come on down and we'll give you a gift card and go get your gift and everything will be all right'," said Daniel Ellis, Shirley's son.

Briarcliff's statement went on to say "I want you to know that immediately after we were informed on December 26, 2007 about the missing package by Ms. Jackson's daughter, we worked with her to identify what was in the package and immediately went and purchased replacements for all of the items and gave them to Ms. Jackson and let her know that the items were a result of her daughter's care and affection ... After we gave the replacement items to Ms. Jackson, her family members complained that the money we spent replacing the gift items did not equate to the amount of money they had spent on them (even though the items were of equal quality and character) because the facility had benefited from post holiday sales in purchasing the items and had not had to pay shipping costs, as they did, to get the items to Ms. Jackson. At Briarcliff Health Center we are very concerned about the privacy of all 200 of our residents. We do not make it a practice to discuss the billing history of our residents and it is our understanding that federal regulations prohibit us from revealing such information about residents. Therefore, I cannot respond to any questions about Ms. Jackson's bill or her payment history at this time. Nor am I permitted to discuss the reasons she was asked to seek care at a different facility. What I can tell you is that we listened to her family members concerns, we purchased replacement items and today we continue to investigate what happened to the package and intend to fully cooperate with any law enforcement investigation into the same."

Shirley Jackson's family still doesn't think that's enough, and it turns out this might not be an isolated incident.

After our initial story aired we heard from a woman named Cynthia Kendall.

"I saw the report on Friday night," said Cynthia Kendall. "I thought maybe I should report this too."

Her mother, Briarcliff resident May Kendall, was hand delivered an 8 X 10 digital picture frame, a Christmas gift from her grandson Eric and his family.

"They are her first great grandchildren," said Cynthia. "She waited a long time to have great grandchildren. Pictures of all of us. Pictures of us, my late sister and friends."

A week later Cynthia said the frame was missing from her mother's room. She questioned the staff, but she hadn't heard anything until just before this interview Monday.

"About 30 minutes ago the administrator called and said that she had done a thorough investigation and that she couldn't find it. She talked to everyone that would have been involved and that it probably wasn't going to show up," said Cynthia. 

Cynthia says that's when Briarcliff administrator, Janna Kuechle said, "Since I had talked to the TV station that she wasn't able to talk to me anymore. I am concerned that they might tell my mother to leave. She gets very good care there."

After our involvement Briarcliff agreed to reimburse the family for the cost of the frame and said they are conducting an internal investigation regarding its disappearance. They have also filed a report with Tyler Police to help get to the bottom of this.

"I just wish someone would return the digital frame with all the photos on it," pleaded Cynthia. "Or the memory stick. Just return the memory stick."

Cynthia Kendall's concerns about her mother being asked to leave may not be unfounded. After the Jackson family complained about the gift that never made it to Shirley Jackson's room, they received a letter telling them the home could no longer meet Shirley's needs. She was moved to another home a few days later.

Tyler Police said an investigator is working on both cases and was at the home just this afternoon, but they have no leads right now.

Danielle Capper, Reporting.


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