Brian Wilson: The Beach Boys co-founder placed under conservatorship due to 'dementia' diagnosis

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A judge found that The Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson should be placed in a conservatorship due to a “major neurocognitive disorder”.

The decision by Los Angeles superior court judge Gus T May means that his personal and medical decisions will be managed after his doctor described the condition he has been diagnosed with as dementia. The petition was initially filed by the 81-year-old musician’s family following the death of his wife Melinda Ledbetter in January.

Ledbetter has managed her husband’s decisions up until his death. Judge May said in the brief hearing where he granted the order: “I find from clear and convincing evidence that a conservatorship of the person is necessary.” He added that Wilson consented to the move and lacks the basic capacity to make healthcare decisions in particular.

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In January, following Ledbetter’s death, his family filed the petition alongside a doctor’s declaration in which it was said that Wilson was taking medication for dementia and “is unable to properly provide for his own personal needs for physical health, food, clothing, or shelter”.

Following his wife’s death, Wilson posted a tribute on social media. He said: “Our five children and I are just in tears. We are lost. Melinda was more than my wife. She was my savior. She gave me the emotional security I needed to have a career. She encouraged me to make the music that was closest to my heart. She was my anchor. She was everything for us. Please say a prayer for her. Love and Mercy Brian.”

Ledbetter served as her husband’s manager since 1999 and helped to revive his career following years of controversial management of his life under Eugene Landy in the 1980s.

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