Five years after falling into a coma caused by two strokes, former prime minister Ariel Sharon was moved back to his Negev ranch early Friday morning.
A large police force was involved in the drive down to Sharon's Sycamore Ranch.RELATED:
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Sharon will spend his first "vacation" from Sheba Medical Center at his ranch in the western Negev over the weekend. Security officials will keep him out of view during the transfer.
Hospital officials were tightlipped about the temporary release from Sheba’s rehabilitation department, but said that specialists from the medical center would accompany him this time.
During future "vacations," they will not, but the Sharon family will privately hire medical and auxiliary staffers. If the family and hired staffers are able to keep him stable at the ranch over several visits, he will remain there, a hospital spokeswoman said on Thursday.
Sharon, 82, went into a coma at Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem’s
Ein Kerem in January 2006 and has since been in a vegetative state. The
family purchased equipment for the ranch, where Sharon’s wife Lily is
buried, that can monitor and maintain his condition around the clock.
Family friend Ra’anan Gissin said that most of the time Sharon breathes
on his own, but sometimes he must be hooked up to an oxygen respirator.