TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - Gerald Goins, 84, has been calling this studio-sized motel room in Tempe home for several months. And even though it's small, he said it was enough room for him and his son Andy.
But last week, his son up and left. "I went to the doctor’s office. After an hour, two hours, I got a ride to come here and he was gone,” said Goins.
Goins said all that was left in his motel room was a handwritten note from his son with instructions on how he was supposed to take care of himself. “He came into my office just looking bewildered, handed me this note and this EBT card and he didn’t understand what was going on,” said April Alt.
Alt manages the Western Lodge Motel and said she has never seen anything like this happen to one of her guests. “The son was his primary caregiver, took him to all his medical appointments, did all of his food, money, everything. And then on the 8th of September, he left him at the doctor's office. And when Gerald came of the doctor his son was gone,” said Alt.
Goins, a retired truck driver who has a heart condition and needs help walking around, said it was his son’s idea to come to Arizona but that he has been paying for everything through his retirement, which he doesn’t know how to access.
“Being cooped up like this is hard for me,” said Goins.
Gerald is now weeks behind in payment. Alt said she is doing what she can to try to get him home to his family in Zanesville, Ohio. “It is just so sad, it really is,” said Alt.
In the meantime, Tempe police said they are aware of what happened to Goins but their hands are tied because he’s not in immediate danger.
Alt said she also reached out to Adult Protective Services.
“In the note, his son gave instructions on where food is at and how long to cook it in the microwave,” said Alt.
Goins does still have his EBT card and has been surviving on whatever food he can purchase at the gas station next door to the motel.
"My funds have been exhausted, my retirement money has been transferred or taken by my son. I have no money left and am trying to get back to my hometown," he said.
If you'd like to help Goins get back to his family in Ohio, a Go Fund Me page has been set up. You can donate by clicking here.