William Hounihan

October 1976
June 2024


My father William Hounihan had a Brain Aneurysm on January 27, 2020. He complained of the worst headache of his life and stayed at home. He went through a whole pack of BC powder and got no relief. His girlfriend of 2 years left that morning to go to a funeral out of town and she got back close to 3. She found him unresponsive and unsure of how long he had been down. She called an ambulance that took him to the closest hospital where I work at to then be flown 4 hours away to a bigger facility with a Neurosurgeon to have a shunt put in. I signed for permission for the shunt. He had filed for divorce but was still legally married to my mother. She got word of what happened and came in and demanded everything be done to save him. She is an addict of 15+ years. I filed for guardianship and for their divorce but the damage had already been done. My dad at 43 years old went on to spend the next 4 years of his life in a nursing home. He was bed bound only able to eat puréed food, drink thickened liquids, answer yes no questions with very limited words, and he never walked again. His brain was severely damaged but his body was strong. Finally he started developing pneumonia often and started getting very weak. He was put on hospice and died 3 weeks later. My dad didn’t have an easy life. He never made it to high school but when he turned 18 he secured a good job and climbed the ranks until he was superintendent of his company. He struggled with an addiction to hydrocodone and gambling for a long time until it finally turned into meth mixed with bipolar disorder. He lost his job after 20 years because his addiction took over his life. He lost everything, his house, truck, family for years. He finally split from my mother who was also an addict and met someone. He was with her for a year before she reached out to me telling me how happy he was and that he was clean. So after years of not seeing him or talking to him, we reconnected. He was happy and healthy. He no longer looked like an addict but my dad again. We talked back and forth for months did Thanksgiving, Christmas, and dinners, and he met my children who he adored. Just days before his aneurysm he was building steps on my deck and cleaning the gutters on my house. I wish more than anything I had more time with him. William Hounihan was the life of any party. He was always on the go, making jokes, laughing, and helping anyone he could. I donated his body to science because I think even in death if he could help just one person learn something it would be worth it to him.

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