Aug 4, 2011  •  In Personal

How My Father Ended Up in the Hospital

Thank you to those who commented on today’s earlier, emotional post. My father is doing much better now — he was able to regain consciousness and was coherent by the time I was finally able to see him. The CAT scan did not reveal any serious damage, but they want to keep him at the hospital overnight for observation.

I realize that the earlier entry was curt and may have been a bit confusing to some. So here’s the full story…

My father runs a coin-operated laundromat in the South Bronx. Ask any seasoned New Yorker where the most dangerous areas in the Five Boroughs are, and the South Bronx will most certainly be on the list.

Earlier today, a woman entered the store and started to make a big fuss about her daughter’s clothes not being in the appropriate dryer. My father told her that the customer is responsible for watching over his/her own property, as is clearly stated in various signs around the establishment. But the woman would not relent, and she continued to scream and make a ruckus for an hour and a half, disturbing the other customers in the process.

Finally, my father asked her if she would like to take a look at the security footage in the back room, and she agreed. He showed her how no one had been using the dryer in question, and how her daughter was not even at the laundromat at the time when she supposedly dropped off her clothes.

The woman hurried away in a huff. But before doing so, she grabbed a container which housed money that were collected from the change machine.

My father quickly went off after her despite the protests from the other worker. He — now, even I will admit that this was dumb on his part — followed her back to her apartment building, and when she noticed him in the lobby whilst waiting for the elevator, she became physically violent. She pushed, shoved, and even kicked him in the chest.

My father shoved her back and told her that he had her on camera, stealing the money, and that he now knew where she lives.

Then he headed back to the store. Within minutes, the woman returned, this time with her brother in tow.

Now, the woman was pretty big — at least 5’10” and about 200 lbs by my father’s estimates (I saw a picture of her and this seems to be a fair approximation). Her brother was a lot larger. But my father? He stands 5’6″ and is thin as a rail due to his illness.

He had no chance against them, and they knew it. Together, they began to beat up on my father.

He did his best to dodge and block them, and even tried to run away a few times. But they were unrelenting. Even as he fell to the ground, they continued to beat him.

The other customers at the store started to scream and yell at them to stop. One person was level-headed enough to call the police and an ambulance. My father tells me that when the sound of the ambulance became audible, the sister and brother ran away from the scene.

And that’s how I found my father, lying on a blood-stained pillow, with a fat lip and other bruises starting to form, with traces of blood all over his face and arms where the hospital staff had failed to clean him properly.

I did my best not to cry as I approached him and held his hand. He asked me why I bothered to make the long trip from New Jersey when I am still in pain myself, and who was watching Claire? (I had called J as soon as I heard what had happened, and he hurried home from work so that I could go be by my father’s side.)

“Because I’m your daughter. Because I know you would do more for me,” I told him.

73 Responses to “How My Father Ended Up in the Hospital”

  1. JX says:

    Hope your father makes a quick recovery! Plus those two need to be put away for a long time.

  2. Pablo Lara H says:

    I am really sorry about it. I hope he will be fine.

  3. Amanda says:

    Oh, wow. I am so, so sorry that this happened. How stressful and upsetting! I hope he starts feeling better soon, and I hope he stays safe once he goes back to work!!

  4. Laura says:

    Oh my goodness. This is terrible. My heart hurts for you and your family. This sounds like something you would see in a movie and I can’t begin to imagine how horrible this is to deal with. You are in my immediate prayers. I hope your father heals soon and you all can find peace after such a terrible incident.

  5. Sheila says:

    Praying for your father.

  6. Haydia says:

    That’s awful! My thoughts are with you and your father for a speedy recovery!

  7. Eun Joo says:

    Unnie, I am so incredibly upset to read this. My prayers to your family and your father. This sort of behavior was enough to enrage me to tears. I pray justice will be delivered and hopefully this will all be over quickly with a speedy recovery for your appa.

  8. Amanda says:

    Yikes, I am so horrified by this story and am so glad to hear that your father is doing ok, relatively speaking. Did the cops arrest the two people who did this? I’m thinking of your family.

  9. Angela says:

    omg this made me cry!!!!! your poor father!!! that’s AWFUL!!!!! you are such a GOOD DAUGHTER… just like your daughters will be for you…

  10. PaigeSix says:

    You and your family will be in my prayers.

  11. Jan says:

    I feel so sad after reading this. He is such a good man. I hope those two are apprehended soon! I hope your father feels better soon

  12. Judy w says:

    Oh my goodness; that is such an awful ordeal your dad went through. You guys are in my thoughts. I hope he will have a speedy recovery and that the police will bring those two people to justice quickly.

  13. Emma says:

    Oh wow, that’s so terrible!! I hope those two people are caught and your dad has a quick recovery! Praying for your family.

  14. Josie says:

    Oh my gosh, that’s horrible! I hope the two people are caught by the police. I hope your father heals quickly!

  15. Zoe says:

    :'( This makes me so sad. I hope your dad’s OK and they catch those people!

  16. Danielle B says:

    I am so sorry, what a horrific story :( Prayers headed your way.

  17. ErraticWit says:

    I’ll never understand what drives people to do those sorts of abominable things. It’s also upsetting that the hospital is either too busy/understaffed or too negligent to even clean your poor father up properly. You have my sympathy. :( I hope neither attacker gets away without punishment, though they seem like the type who wouldn’t bat an eye at jail time.

  18. Oh wow, Jenny – this makes me so sad! I can’t believe people could be so cruel. I am glad your father isn’t faring worse (though it sounds quite serious) and wish for a quick recovery.

  19. socalohana says:

    I cannot believe this happened to your father. It makes so sad to think that people could be so brutal. I pray that recovery is quick and that justice is served.

  20. malin says:

    OMG! I am soo sorry. This is awful. I hope your dad will be ok…

  21. Wow, what is up with people? That makes me sad that anyone could do such a thing. I am so glad your dad is okay and I hope he has a quick recovery. I also hope those insane people get put away for a long time.

  22. Flora says:

    I’m so sorry! Praying for your family and hope your dad makes a quick recovery.

  23. Corey Ann says:

    Oh my goodness, how terrible and so sad! How awful that those people did that to him. Stories like this make me so sad, it’s shameful that people treat others this way. I got teary reading this – I can only imagine how scared he was and worried you were.

    I’m glad that he is doing better and I am hoping that there is no permanent damage. I hope that the people are caught.

  24. janieishme says:

    Oh my goodness! I’m having a hard time deciding whether to feel concerned for your father, sad for your family, or fully outraged that something like this should have happened to someone who was only trying to run an honest business. When my parents first immigrated to the States, they ran a few businesses of their own, and I remember feeling so scared as a little girl the few times they had run ins with people who resorted to senseless violence for no reason. Now, it just makes me angry. My prayers are ABSOLUTELY with your family and with your father for a speedy recovery. I am truly hoping these evildoers (I can think of them as no less) are brought to justice.

  25. Kit says:

    I am so sorry! I hope your father is ok.

    And may i take a 2nd to be royally pissed at the shitheads who beat up on such a frail man?!?!?! WTH?!?!
    Once your father’s health is stabilzed/improving, are you/your family going to press charges? Did the wutnesses step forward and talk to the police?! I want to pray for justice too!

  26. Helene says:

    i’m so sad yet angry after reading your post. we’ll all pray for your dad. and do NOT let those ppl escape!!

  27. Arlene Chon says:

    I hope those people get apprehended really soon and I hope they stay in jail for good! They’re awful creatures! I’ll keep you and your family in my prayers… and a big hug to you for being such a good daughter (the last line actually had me tearing…) you made me go, awwwwww… I hope your dad recovers quickly…

  28. Christine says:

    Thoughts and prayers for a quick recovery.

  29. Susan says:

    I’m crying right now.. I can’t believe people are like this. I will pray for you and your family and your father’s recovery. Those two people that hurt him sound so horrible and evil.

    But you and your father are most blessed, to have each other and love each other. Will keep you in my prayers…

  30. Donna says:

    Jenny, my heart truly goes out to you and your dad is in my prayers. I am so sorry that this even happened. I am so angry and sorry for you and your family!

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