Ginger Franklin was just shy of her 50th birthday when she fell down the stairs of her Nashville-area townhouse in 2008. A marketing representative for Sam’s Club, she was taken to the hospital with a severe brain injury. Doctors weren’t sure if she would survive.
Since Franklin had not designated anyone to make decisions for her if she became incapacitated, and with no immediate family, her aunt was advised to petition the court for a guardian. The guardian, a lawyer appointed by the county, placed her in a group home for seriously mentally ill adults.
But Franklin was not mentally ill. And she did what no one expected her to do: she recovered.
When she returned home from a rehabilitation center seven weeks later, however, the guardian “told me that I didn’t have a home anymore and that my townhouse was empty,” Franklin said.