Casey Kasem, considered the most recognizable voice in American radio, is still in critical condition at St. Anthony’s hospital in Washington state, suffering from an infected bedsore. In October, 2013, doctors diagnosed Kasem with Lewy Body Dimentia, similar to Parkinson’s disease, and since then his health has deteriorated rapidly. He has even lost the ability to speak.
Unfortunately for Casey, his final years have been punctuated with family drama and litigation.
The fight is between Kasem’s children from his first marriage, Kerri, Julie and Mike, and his current wife, Jean Kasem.
The dispute hit national headlines when, on May 14, Casey Kasem’s family filed a missing persons report after the radio star disappeared from his hospital room in the middle of the night.
Jean Kasem took him from his hospital room in Santa Monica and drove him to Las Vegas, then Arizona, then back to Las Vegas and finally Washington State. Jean said they were visiting friends. The trip apparently took an enormous toll on Casey Kasem.
When the couple arrived in Washington, Jean called an ambulance to take him to their house. The driver was so concerned over Kasem’s condition that he called adult protective services.
When Casey Kasem arrived in the hospital, he had formed a large ulcer, bedsores and painful muscle contractures. Kerri Kasem alleges that Jean has mistreated and even tortured the radio star, claiming that she withheld desperately needed pain-medication and fed him by putting ensure into his feeding tube.
The wild trip ultimately led to Kerri Kasem seeking and, on May 20, receiving expanded conservatorship over her father. During his hospital stay in Santa Monica, the family was granted very limited visiting time, supposedly not being allowed to see Casey for 5 months.
Jean Kasem says that Kerri just wants money.
She accused the daughter of both borrowing money and wanting more to give to the church of Scientology. Kerri Kasem has denied those allegations.
Casey did not leave the Washington area. His current hospitalization began on June 1, and was quickly elevated to emergency status.
Casey Kasem was the host of the American Top 40, American Top 20 and American Top 10 until 2009. He was the voice behind many beloved children’s characters, from Peter Cottontail to Shaggy on the Scooby-Doo cartoons (full character name: Norville “Shaggy” Rogers). Although not many people may know his face, his voice has been immortalized.
Casey Kasem may not be with us much longer and Kerri says she wants the entire family to be there, even if that means Jean. The reason, because she knows that’s what Casey would want.