S. CLAY WILSON UPDATE
Smashed up and in a coma when found unconscious the night of November 1, 2008, famed iconoclastic buccaneer undergrounder S. Clay Wilson has disappeared from public view. He’s recuperating. Wilson’s live-in lover Lorraine Chamberlain writes: “I have been flirting with S. Clay Wilson for forty years, lived with him for ten, visited him in the hospital every day for a year, and brought him home to take care of ...” She continues at sclaywilsontrust.com (in italics):
S. Clay Wilson was [not coming home from a bar; he was] trying to get home from a friend’s house November 1, 2008, the night his life changed forever. We will never be certain if he fell or was attacked, since he has no memory of it. The numerous injuries on his face and head made him look like he was beat up. Two good samaritans found him unconscious between parked cars, face down in the rain, and called an ambulance. (I have tried to find them in order to express my gratitude for saving his life, but have had no success.) He’d suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury, bleeding in three hemispheres of his brain. He spent three weeks in a coma, and we had no idea how severely impaired he was for many months. Once he began to speak again we realized he hadn’t just “awakened” to resume life as it had been before.
Taking care of him 24 hours a day is a daunting task, but one I am devoted to. He cannot go out on his own or he would get lost immediately, nor can he be left alone in the house. He cannot problem-solve, nor do anything for himself. Yet somehow he is aware of this loss of freedom, and some days I can tell it saddens him.
The days he spent drawing were his happiest, but after the first year at home, he stopped doing it. He did about 15 drawings the first summer he was home, but by the next Christmas he would no longer go in his studio. Yet he thinks about drawing all the time, and frequently brings piles of his art supplies onto the bed. I continue to hope this means one day he will resume drawing. ...
He is very quiet now after being a motor mouth all his life. But he is not a blank slate. ... He is more sensitive now, and needs reassurance every day. He’s always asking if I still love him, and reaches for my hand when we’re walking or watching a movie.
I have put together a Special Needs Trust for him since he is no longer capable of earning a living. He will need 24-hour care from now on since the little details of daily life are a mystery to him now, and he is easily confused. This gifted artist worked as hard as he partied and was a playful, brilliant person. Although he is still capable of worrying about the future, he does not fully understand what has happened to alter it. He is now in need of help. This is a tragic turn of events for a proud man.
The Trust is set up so it can only be spent on him. We pool our meager resources for basic expenses. I hope people will find a way to donate what they can to give him a better quality of life and assist in his ongoing care. Donations can be made here [i.e., sclaywilsontrustfund.com] by clicking on the yellow PayPal button. Or mail to PO Box 14854 San Francisco CA 94114
Look for his Facebook page at S. Clay Wilson. Thank you! -- Lorraine Chamberlain