Brian Wilson: Beach Boys legend diagnosed with dementia as family seek conservatorship following wife Melinda's death

Brian Wilson, the legendary co-founder of the Beach Boys, has been diagnosed with dementia, with his family petitioning for a conservatorship. (Credit: Getty Images)Brian Wilson, the legendary co-founder of the Beach Boys, has been diagnosed with dementia, with his family petitioning for a conservatorship. (Credit: Getty Images)
Brian Wilson, the legendary co-founder of the Beach Boys, has been diagnosed with dementia, with his family petitioning for a conservatorship. (Credit: Getty Images)
It comes after his wife, Melinda Ledbetter, died aged 77 in January

The Beach Boys' Brian Wilson has been diagnosed with dementia, with his family moving to appoint new conservators following his wife's death last month.

In court documents for the conservatorship filing, Wilson is describing as not having "the capacity to give informed consent to the administration of medications appropriate to the care and treatment of major neurocognitive disorders (including dementia)”. He was also described as “unable to properly provide for his or her personal needs for physical health, food, clothing, or shelter", with a doctor providing testimony in which he said Wilson “often makes spontaneous irrelevant or incoherent utterances, has very short attention span and while unintentionally disruptive, is frequently unable to maintain decorum appropriate to the situation.”

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In a statement on his website, Wilson's family said: “Following the passing of Brian’s beloved wife Melinda, after careful consideration and consultation among Brian, his seven children, [housekeeper] Gloria Ramos and Brian’s doctors (and consistent with family processes put in place by Brian and Melinda), we are confirming that longtime Wilson family representatives LeeAnn Hard and Jean Sievers will serve as Brian’s co-conservators”.

The proposed conservatorship has been described by his family as allowing him to “enjoy all of his family and friends and continue to work on current projects as well as participate in any activities he chooses”. The use of conservatorships, which is the appointment of a guardian to look after the financial or personal matters for those deemed unfit to do so for themselves, gained public attention following the #FreeBritney trial, in which fans and supporters of Britney Spears called for the removal of the order after her father and lawyers who were in control were accused of abusing their power.

Melinda Ledbetter, who was married to Wilson for almost 30 years, died aged 77 on January 30. She was credited with helping the musician with getting his career back on track in the 90s, having also served as his long-term manager.

After her death was announced, Wilson said in a statement on social media: “Melinda was more than my wife. She was my saviour. 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.”

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