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More than 15 million adults and their immediate families in America today must cope with a patient suffering from severe mental illness. In too many cases, these families cannot or do not know how to get help for their loved ones.

SANDY’S GIFT: WALKING WITH THE LIGHT (Cedar Forge, 2017, softcover) by William P. Dunn IV is an intimate and shocking true story that tells of the tragic plight of Sandra Dunn, a mother and loving wife whose life takes a tragic turn when she suddenly falls victim to severe mental illness; how the healthcare profession and the legal system prevented her from getting the treatment she needed; how it destroyed her family and nearly got them killed. By sharing his story, Dunn hopes that people will have a better understanding of the ravages of mental illness and know how to cope with them better.

Her husband, William P. Dunn IV had it all. He was a true success story. After college, he went to work on Wall Street as a back-office clerk and rose through to the ranks to become a successful bond trader at a major investment firm. In 1985, he met the love his life. They had two lovely young daughters. But then life took a dark and unexpected turn.

Sandra’s behavior became increasingly erratic and perplexing. She refused to seek medical help. She jumped from a moving car with her children in it. She refused to attend her daughter’s birthday party. Finally persuaded to get medical help, she refused to take her medications. Her behavior became so irrational that the police had to be called. Not even they could help much. Therapy failed. She had to be institutionalized.

But when Bill Dunn tried to find out what was wrong with his wife, nobody would tell him. Why? Because of HIPPA, the law that regulates patients’ privacy. Social workers and doctors could tell him nothing about her case. Appeals to the courts proved to be in vain. He had to stand by helplessly and watch his wife deteriorate even further. Worse, she became increasingly violent and dangerous. Indeed, Bill and the daughters feared for their lives—and came perilously close to losing their lives.

“Bill has revealed his breathtaking story of love and courageous struggles against a flawed healthcare system in the wake of heartbreak and poignant, family tragedy. A riveting read throughout…a chilling wake-up call for everyone, especially those whose lives have been impacted by the presence and aftermath of mental illness.” —Gordon Thomas Ward, author of Tracing Infinity

SANDY’S GIFT: WALKING WITH THE LIGHT is a breathtaking story of love and courage as the author struggles against a deeply flawed healthcare system in the midst of heartbreak and poignant tragedy. It is also a chilling wake-up call for everyone, especially those whose lives have been impacted by the presence and aftermath of mental illness.

Copyright 2017 | William Dunn | All Rights Reserved

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