What can be done to help this man?

Luke Tyrone (Photo by OBSERVER media/Martina Johnson)

Concerned residents who saw a defence force member in uniform, dragging 63-year-old Luke Tyrone outside Mount St John’s Medical Centre yesterday morning are calling on the Family and Social Services Division to help the homeless man.

Hungry, sick and tired, Tyrone told OBSERVER media he had no one to turn to, as he laid on the grass nearby the guard hut on the hospital compound.

The frail looking man said he had been sleeping on the premises for the past two days and he tried to seek help at the hospital but was turned away. OBSERVER media was unable to get a comment from workers in the triage area; the security guard said she couldn’t speak and efforts to reach the Social Services Chief Alethea Byers were unsuccessful.

“Them backward in there,” he said of hospital staff, adding “I have epilepsy, I can’t go nowhere and I get blackouts so I can’t really work for a long time now. I’m sick so somebody would have to help me. I would like the help.”

Struggling to speak as he complained of stomach cramps, he said he hadn’t eaten a meal for those two days spent in the hospital yard.

The man, who clearly also has major dental issues, said his relatives are overseas and he has one brother here in Antigua but “he can’t help me”.

One of the residents who reported the matter to OBSERVER media early yesterday said, “We were going into the hospital and when we were walking in we saw a defence force guy and a security lady and the defence force man was holding up a gentleman, the man couldn’t stand up, he’s very small bodied.”

That resident said another onlooker shouted to the defence force member, “Oh God, carry the man inside, you don’t see the man sick and the man cannot stand up?” And the defence force guy said, “’You come, you can come’, and then when we were leaving the man was lying down on the grass there.”

OBSERVER media immediately went to the area and found Tyrone who was still there, crying in pain near a garbage container.

Tyrone, a former resident of Clare Hall, said while he has been outside the hospital, no one has paid him any mind perhaps because he lives on the streets and he’s unkempt.

The elderly man said he received medication from someone at the hospital when he first arrived on Sunday, but since then, he has received no help, not even food or water.

Several passers-by by looked on as OBSERVER media spoke with the man about his plight. Sinclair DeSuza, another elderly man who was at the hospital, offered food and water for which Tyrone expressed gratitude.

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