Grieving family anger as engagement ring ‘disappears’ at Good Hope hospital

A bereaved family has reprimanded a Birmingham hospital for ‘losing’ an irreplaceable item while caring for him in the days before he died.

Sheila Morecock was admitted to Good Hope Hospital in Sutton Coldfield on Friday 19 March last year after falling ill at her Streetly home.

She was taken to hospital by ambulance and her family was given limited opportunity to see her during the third national lockdown of the coronavirus pandemic.

The 90-year-old initially went to A&E and was then admitted to the AMU (Acute Medical Ward) overnight. She was then shifted to Ward 12 on Saturday (March 20), where she remained until she died on Thursday, April 1.

read more Victim’s family says mother’s necklace ‘disappeared’ in hospital

Her heartbroken son, Ross, went to the hospital that day and was given an envelope with her jewelry, but noticed that his mother’s diamond engagement ring was missing.

His mother wanted his engagement ring to go to his only granddaughter, Danielle.

He said: “My mother died and I can’t do what she wanted, I think I would have let her down if I didn’t try and do something about it.

The hospital said that when the mother went inside, they recorded on a document that she had found four rings.

But he had five. A red ruby ​​ring covering her engagement ring, with the diamond on the inside. Her wedding ring, Mary Nan’s wedding ring and an eternity ring.”

Sheila Morecock’s family was given an envelope (pictured) containing four rings, but her 50-year-old diamond engagement ring was not among them.

He continued: “Her Longines watch was in a laundry bag she gave us. It was the clothes she went in and the one she was sick on. I was going to shoo them away but my wife asked me to check them out. Asked for it and I’m glad I did.

“We were told that the red ring had been removed ‘because we were afraid of losing it’.

“But the engagement ring was lost then. If they took off the red ring, they would have seen the engagement ring that was under it. My mother would hate to take it off.”

“He said it could have come off, but it was being held by the ring of ruby, which he took off.

“My true feeling is that someone stole the ring.”

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Ross was upset that the system that existed was not working.

He said: “I asked if he ever found the item in the laundry and he said he ‘never found anything’.

“I feel like they don’t want to acknowledge any of this. I have contacted PALS written to Andrew Mitchell, the CEO of the Trust. [MP] And no one came back to us.

“Along with her rings, she also had a gold necklace and locket which were returned. But the engagement ring was by far the most precious.

He said: “It was a white gold ring with two square legs on top and a 1.5-carat diamond. It was 50 years old and has been estimated by Atkinsons The Jewelers to be worth £7,000.

“But it’s not money.

“I really wanted to be able to give the ring to my daughter, mother’s granddaughter, because that’s what she wanted to do. But I can’t. It’s theory now.”

“They don’t feel like you’re not accomplishing what they wanted to do.”

As well as a Saint Christopher, a silver chain that Josephine wore for more than 17 years has also gone missing.
As well as a Saint Christopher, a silver chain that Josephine wore for more than 17 years has also gone missing.

This is the second time a bereaved family has reported missing jewelery from Good Hope Hospital to BirminghamLive during the pandemic.

The family of Josephine Johnson reported a similar incident when the sentimental necklace went missing last July.

Ross said he was told by police that missing items at the hospital were a “regular occurrence”.

He said: “The woman I spoke to at PALS (the hospital’s Patient Advice and Liaison Service) was actually the p****d who said ‘we have no responsibility for the jewelry’. When my mother When she went inside, she was not a compose mantis.

“There are signs on the wall that the hospital was not responsible for the personal loss, but she could not read them.

“PALS told us to contact the police. He took it very seriously and visited the hospital and interviewed the staff members.

“Police told us they didn’t think they were going to find out who took the ring and pointed out that there have been several cases in the past months in which patient jewelry has gone missing, especially elderly patients.

“He said ‘it was not unusual’. But without CCTV or witnesses it was not possible to ascertain what had happened.”

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A West Midlands Police spokesman said: “We have received a charge of theft and after all due investigation a case was registered until no more information was coming to light.

“We kept the complainant updated throughout the investigation.”

The University Hospitals Birmingham Trust, responsible for Good Hope Hospital, said it was ‘in the process of organizing reimbursement’.

A hospital spokeswoman said: “We are sorry for any distress caused by this situation for Mrs Morecock’s family at what must be a very difficult time for them.”

Ross continued: “I want to tell people if an ambulance is going to pick someone up and take them to the hospital, ask them to first offer their relative’s jewelry, whatever it’s worth. .

“I hope that by highlighting our experience it can prevent other families from going through something similar in the future.”

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