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Doctor accused of killing wife dies in hospital

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Dr. Henry Bailey, accused of suffocating his wife of 60 years in a "mercy killing," died Friday at Trinity Hospital.

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Dr. Henry Bailey
Dr. Henry Bailey

Officers arrived at Bailey's west Augusta home July 16 and found that Gene Bailey, 84, had been suffocated with a plastic bag. Henry Bailey, also 84, was taken to the hospital after attempting suicide with medication.

An investigation found that the retired surgeon suffocated his wife to ease her suffering from advanced dementia, authorities said.

Bailey had served in the Navy for nearly three years and was a 1951 graduate of the Medical College of Georgia, according to his obituary.

In 1958, he opened an Augusta office, where he practiced general surgery for 35 years. Certified by the American Board of Surgery, he became the chief of staff at University Hospital in 1967.

Authorities said that the couple's health had been steadily declining and that Gene Bailey could no longer walk or communicate.

Henry Bailey entered the Richmond County jail Aug. 8 and was given bond on condition that he stay at the Silver Linings Personal Care Home in Stapleton, Ga.

Superior Court Judge Carl Brown Jr. revoked his bond Aug. 10, however, after he left the facility without permission for a medical appointment and "engaged in activity other than at a doctor's office," according to court records.

Bailey was rearrested and immediately sent to Georgia Regional Hospital.

Brown ordered the facility to determine whether Bailey was competent to stand trial, his degree of criminal responsibility and whether he suffered from mental illness or retardation.

Bailey was later transferred to Medical College of Georgia Hospital because of his increasing medical issues, Capt. William Reeves said.

Several days later, Brown reinstated the bond and released Bailey, Reeves said.

Comments (26) Add comment
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KingJames
10
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KingJames 09/28/10 - 10:00 am
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A very sad end to a very sad

A very sad end to a very sad story. My prayers are with the Bailey family.

Bantana
2071
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Bantana 09/28/10 - 10:10 am
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god rest their souls.

god rest their souls.

edwardc
1
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edwardc 09/28/10 - 10:23 am
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Sometimes we say to people,

Sometimes we say to people, "If there is anything I can do to help, let me know." Then the person asks for a favor, and we say, "Not that, something easier." People can become overwhelmed and fall into despair. We don't want to be bothered with helping each other when a true need exists.

storiesihaveread
358
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storiesihaveread 09/28/10 - 10:29 am
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edwardc you hit the nail dead

edwardc you hit the nail dead on with your comment!!!

GoGators2010
0
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GoGators2010 09/28/10 - 10:41 am
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I am sure The Lord has

I am sure The Lord has already forgiven him and welcomed him home.

windinmyface
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windinmyface 09/28/10 - 10:44 am
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His suffering is over. Their

His suffering is over. Their souls are together. We sit and watch our loved ones suffer knowing there is nothing that we can do about it. My husband died from cancer. There was nothing we could do but pray for God to take him. He suffered. My cat got sick and I had to have him euthanized and what a peaceful death it was. My thoughts were if only people had this choice. When someone dies real fast my feeling are that how blessed they were, not to have suffered. It's sad for the Bailey family their the ones that have to deal with the loss. Dr Bailey and his wife are at peace. My prayers are for the ones left behind.

pommom38
1496
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pommom38 09/28/10 - 10:42 am
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Ok, if you say so.. Most

Ok, if you say so.. Most people in grieving don't make hard demands, usually quite simple ones. So it would be a cold hearted person to say what you claim they do.
I feel sad for the family left behind, but the couple are together forever at last, and the BS system can't harrass him anymore!!

corgimom
32303
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corgimom 09/28/10 - 10:54 am
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I don't see it as a sad

I don't see it as a sad ending at all.

He is in Heaven, reunited with his beloved wife, and they now have Eternal Life.

check
18
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check 09/28/10 - 11:39 am
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Let not the circumstances of

Let not the circumstances of their deaths pale the tremendous citizens and difference they made in the community. God bless their family.

dani
12
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dani 09/28/10 - 11:41 am
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I agree, a tragic story. It

I agree, a tragic story. It is good to see most of the comments are expressing sympathy. God Bless all of you for caring.

workingirl32
0
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workingirl32 09/28/10 - 12:27 pm
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Money and high education can

Money and high education can not buy a true happiness, now he is in peace. Very touching story.

augusta citizen
9324
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augusta citizen 10/19/12 - 06:14 pm
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..

..

goldie53
46
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goldie53 09/28/10 - 12:35 pm
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May God be with this family.

May God be with this family. The suffering is over for both.

Unless you have walked in these shoes. No one can imagine what AD & dementia does to a person. I am taking care of someone in my family who has dementia. This disease is horrible my family member was so bright ,strong and a good person. One day she could remember telephone numbers and the next day she could not recall one number...I am literally watching her die a slow death right in front of me. She is weak , confused and communicating is hard. It is not easy to watch this happens to someone you love very much.

whyme
1799
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whyme 09/28/10 - 01:29 pm
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"Mercy killing" wouldn't be

"Mercy killing" wouldn't be necessary if everything was really done to make the patient comfortable. We had the opposite happen to us-we had a doctor who indicated that when my dad had "suffered" enough he would ease his suffering, and he did alright. When my dad couldn't go and do as he wished in his last days, he was given a combo of meds which reduced his breathing and out he went. He was adamant about living until the very end. On another note, people are afraid to use enough pain meds to ease the loved ones' discomfort while allowing them to die a more peaceful death. This man should not have felt that he had to put his wife out of her misery-where was their family, friends, medical care staff?

sassygirl3914
0
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sassygirl3914 09/28/10 - 04:44 pm
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He may be a killer but I am

He may be a killer but I am sure at the time he was doing what he thought was best for her. Yes he took a life but I am sure he got tired of her suffering. Who knows she probably asked him to do it. I would want the same thing. Who wants to suffer anyways

a different drum
26
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a different drum 09/28/10 - 05:03 pm
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We all do what we have to do.

We all do what we have to do.

Dixieman
14943
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Dixieman 09/28/10 - 05:48 pm
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RIP. I am sure they are now

RIP. I am sure they are now together.

follower
59
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follower 09/28/10 - 05:55 pm
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juantez, it seems everyone on

juantez, it seems everyone on this post has been sympathetic with their words and thoughts. Perhaps you could have weighed your words more carefully.

Until you've grieved over a life partner, don't be so quick to judge. This circumstance is far, far different than the ones that frequent the airways.

I'm praying for this family. And while I'm at it, I'll pray for you.

workingirl32
0
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workingirl32 09/28/10 - 09:31 pm
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I understand what juantez was

I understand what juantez was saying about this man, he killed his wife and he is guilty of killing. He should of let God to take care this matter. I feel sympathy for him and his wife health problem, but we all should learn something from this, no matter what the situation may be, we have to put it on God hand first. mercy killing sounds pretty good, I wish it was legal, but we really have to put it on God hand.

soldout
1280
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soldout 09/28/10 - 09:33 pm
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goldie53 there are some

goldie53 there are some natural approaches that are really helping these siutations and Dr. David Williams who does the alternatives newsletter has two or three approaches. I recommended one of those to someone and they said it worked better than anything the doctor had given the person.

elfloppitt
0
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elfloppitt 09/29/10 - 01:17 am
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Only God has a right to judge

Only God has a right to judge and we do not. Until you have lived in someones life or walked in their shoes what right have you to judge them. He probably felt like he was doing the right thing at the time and he tried to kill his self also, it just didn't happen as planned. Thank God he did not have to go to prison for his crime and suffer in there as he would have and now he is with his wife and they can now enjoy each more and don't have to suffer any more. God is Great!!!!!

TeamLoser
1
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TeamLoser 09/29/10 - 06:12 am
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Im glad that he will not have

Im glad that he will not have to go through the torture of a trial. He is free of the weight of what he did even if it was for the best. I expect the legal system made the mans last days hell.

My grandfather used to go to Dr. Bailey and they said he was a good doctor.

Abby-noll
0
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Abby-noll 09/29/10 - 06:21 am
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This has been such a sad

This has been such a sad story right from the beginning. I hope they are both at peace now. God bless his family. Dementia is such a horrible thing to see your loved one go through. My grandfather had dementia and even though we told the doctors something was wrong they kept brushing us off. One day I called my grandmother and she said "your papaw just beat me up." Of course I flew right over there and indeed he had. We had to go to the extremes of calling the police and having him arrested and committed for observation before the doctors finally paid attention to what we were saying. The next 6 years were awful for me and the family. We had to watch our strong, independent papaw, husband, father deteriorate into someone we hardly knew. That being said, I can only imagine what he and his wife were going through. Yes, murder is wrong but sometimes things aren't just black and white.

johnston.cliff
2
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johnston.cliff 09/29/10 - 07:40 am
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Jack Kervorkian has it right.

Jack Kervorkian has it right.

Indigo
4
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Indigo 09/29/10 - 07:58 am
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Sort of a Romeo and Juliet

Sort of a Romeo and Juliet tragedy. People today do not understand commitment as this generation did. I'm not going to get into the legalese of what he did, but I am betting if we knew the story, it would have indeed shown a merciful ending by the husband. And in the end, his own grief snuffed his life out also.

prissy
0
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prissy 09/29/10 - 10:19 am
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Poor Dr Bailey and Mrs Jean,

Poor Dr Bailey and Mrs Jean, I knew them both, early on... He brought me and my 2 brothers into this world. God Bless them.

KingJames
10
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KingJames 09/29/10 - 10:38 am
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No matter what anyone's

No matter what anyone's feelings about mercy killings are, I don't think anything other than sympathy remarks are needed at this time. Maybe if the AC runs another story on the subject, then it would be OK to express opinions. But, for now this time and space should be availble to offer condolences. This is sad for the family, but at the same time they probably have a sense of relief. My mom said she felt relief after my grandmother who suffered from dementia passed away a year and a half ago. Caring for my grandmother had become a full time job for my mom, her three siblings, and a hired caregiver. This family's grief started long before Mrs. Bailey died. God bless them as they grieve for Dr. Bailey. My comment eariler about the sadness of this story is that Dr. Bailey was heartbroken. Though he joins Mrs. Bailey now, the time spent without her must have seemed like an eternity. I'm glad they are together now, but wish the circumstances could have been different for both of them. The very sad part is that Mrs. Bailey was unaware of her transition, and that Dr. Bailey suffered the pain of knowing all too well about it until he transitioned.

ustabe
1
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ustabe 09/29/10 - 04:26 pm
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Could the headline not have

Could the headline not have been edited to read something like..."Local Physican Dies in Trinity Hospital"? or "Local Surgeon Dies...."? Yes, he was accused to killing his wife, but what a tasteless, thoughtless, and cruel was to report his death! Deepest sympathies to the Bailey family. Rest in peace Dr. and Mrs. Bailey.

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