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Kathleen Pollock, 87, left retirement home on her Final Journey. Was it confusion or “a last wish” to die at her former home?

February 5th, 2013  

Dedicated to Kathleen Pollock, 87.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH places three roses at the Pollock Estate in memory of Kathleen Pollock

MISSISSAUGAWATCH places three roses at 13 Pine Ridge Drive in memory of Kathleen Pollock, 87

As part of our research into Alzheimer’s and Elder Care, here’s our video, complete with transcript.

Kathleen Pollock, 87, leaves retirement home to die outside her former family mansion (8:30 min)

(Click here to go directly to the clip on YouTube)


MISSISSAUGAWATCH, driving along Pine Ridge Drive to the Pollock Estate, Scarborough, February 4, 2013

There are times when I get so involved in a story, like it’s so compelling, and I find the Traditional Media doesn’t [sic] answer all the questions —and certainly doesn’t [sic] go deep enough for my own satisfaction.

And then what I have to do is get the answer myself.

And I’m heading down Pine Ridge Road [sic] and specifically I’m visiting 13 Pine Ridge Road [sic] to see a house that 87 year old woman, Kathleen Pollock felt drawn to.

And she lived in a retirement home, got dressed up, put her make-up on, called a cab, was taken down this road and then walked up the lane to her old house —and died there.

As the newspapers say, she had beginning Alzheimer’s. So there’s speculation whether she was just confused, or actually purposely went here —to die on her property near the house.

So this-here is 13 Pine Ridge.

MISSISSAUGAWATCH, parked at 13 Pine Ridge Drive, Pollock Estate gate, Scarborough, February 4, 2013

I brought my laptop.

And typing in, or searching for “Kathleen Pollock”.

I think I’ll read the Toronto Star.

Missing senior, 87, found dead outside her former Scarborough mansion.

By all accounts, 87-year-old Kathleen Pollock loved her old home at 13 Pine Ridge Drive in Scarborough, overlooking Lake Ontario.

It was at the property known as the Pollock Estate where she lived for a half century, where she raised her family before the children grew up and she and her husband went to nursing homes. And it was there where she was found dead around 4:30 a.m. Friday, hours after taking a cab from her retirement home to pay one last visit to the abandoned and once grand mansion.

Greg Pollock, Kathleen’s son, said he thinks his mother was going for one last visit to the home she loved.

“There was no indication of trauma, she seemed to just lay down peacefully by the front door and pass away,” he said, his voice wavering. “I think this was her last wish.”

Pollock said his mother was independent and would often do errands on her own, but she had never gone missing.

“She doesn’t venture far. That was quite a journey. It was like almost a mission,” Pollock said. “She hadn’t visited the house in a while. Destiny was calling her and she was going home.”

[Getting tearful] Sorry, guys.

Neighbour Risalina Rousell, who lives next door to the Pollock Estate, saw her climb out of a cab alone on Thursday and take uncertain steps across the snow towards the now-empty mansion, which had been sold to developers for more than $2 million in 2011. The property is slated to be subdivided into three lots for grand homes on one-acre lots.

“She passed by,” Rousell said. “The gate was closed. I said, ‘She shouldn’t be going there by herself.’ She could hardly walk. She was limping. I was monitoring her.”

Plumber Loris Vits, who was working at Rousell’s home, went out to try to help the elderly woman as she walked across the snow.

And it was really bitter cold that day. I remember.

Pollock, whose family owned Pollock’s Shoes retail chain in Ontario, was a little bent over and her steps were uncertain but she was insistent that she walk across the snow to the boarded-up mansion.

She was wearing a winter coat and carrying a plastic bag and was clearly determined to get to the house under the grand pines when Vits approached her.

Pollock made it immediately clear to Vits that she didn’t want help as she walked towards her old home.

“She was fine,” Vits said. “She was lucid.”

“She said no. She just said she was going next door. That was her home for 50 years.”

Rousell watched her slow determined walk until she reached the front door, and assumed things were all right.

Pollock’s body was found crumpled on the doorstep of her empty former family home around 4:30 a.m.

Rousell’s husband Doug, 69, said he can totally understand why Kathleen Pollock felt the need to go back to the wooded home one last time.

Is this heaven or is it not?”

You know it’s funny how many elderly refer to their house as heaven.

My own parents, my mother, refers to her house as paradise. Paradise.

And the thing about Alzheimer’s is there’s something called Sundowning. And that is that usually in the late afternoon, there’s a need for some elderly to go Home.

And what they’ll do is ask for their hat and coat and get all dressed up. And they can be waiting for a bus, or, you know, going for a walk. But it’s very well known —this whole idea of Sundowning.

Now whether Ms. Pollock was Sundowning and just was successful in getting here, or whether she was very much All There —lucid —and realized that this is where she wanted to be…

Because one thing about Alzheimer’s is that the disease itself has a horrible-horrible ending.

And it wasn’t, oh, two-three days before, they were mentioning a physician, who was growing older, and realized that he was getting the first stages of Alzheimer’s as well.

So he put together a concoction of pills that that he would take to make sure that he didn’t get too far along Alzheimer’s. Because eventually you can’t even swallow anymore. You can’t feed yourself. It’s —the end of really horrible.

So he made this concoction to end it before he ever got that far down the road.

And his son said that eventually he forgot what the pills were for.

And maybe you know, it might have been that Ms. Pollock was confused. And then again, she might have known exactly what she was doing. And she had a different set of “pills” —just passed away at the doorstep of her own little piece of heaven.




11:31 AM – 1 Feb 13

News Release header

Missing woman,
Kathleen Pollock, 87

Broadcast time: 03:04
Friday, February 1, 2013

33 Division

The Toronto Police Service is requesting the public’s assistance locating a missing woman.

Kathleen Pollock, 87, was reported missing on Thursday, January 31, 2013, at 11 p.m., in the Don Mills Road/Lawrence Avenue East area.

She is described as white, 4’11”, 110 lbs., with reddish curly hair. She was last seen wearing a green winter coat with a hood.

Police are concerned for her safety.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 416-808-3300, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 416-222-TIPS (8477), online at www.222tips.com, text TOR and your message to CRIMES (274637), or Leave A Tip on Facebook. Download the free Crime Stoppers Mobile App on iTunes, Google Play or Blackberry App World.

Constable Tony Vella, Corporate Communications, for Detective Brian Martell, 33 Division


Toronto Police @TorontoPolice

0201 10:46 Missing Woman Loc, Kathleen Pollock, 87 http://is.gd/LkOfDJ

11:35 AM – 1 Feb 13

News Release header

Missing woman located,
Kathleen Pollock, 87

Broadcast time: 10:46
Friday, February 1, 201333 Division
416-808-3300The Toronto Police Service would like to thank the public for their assistance locating a missing woman.Kathleen Pollock, 87, was reported missing on Thursday, January 31, 2013, at 11 p.m., in the Don Mills Road/Lawrence Avenue East area.See previous release.She was located on Friday, February 1, 2013, at 3:30 a.m.

Constable Tony Vella, Corporate Communications, for Detective Brian Martell, 33 Division

Flowers left for Kathleen Pollock, photographed at the Pollock Estate, 13 Pine Ridge Drive, Scarborough (February 3, 2013)


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