A legal battle over who should serve as a conservator for Eagles co-founder Randy Meisner was settled Thursday when both sides agreed the two men currently serving as the temporary overseers of the entertainer’s personal and business affairs should be given a permanent role.
The resolution means that Meisner’s longtime friend, Arthur Ford, will continue to be responsible for getting proper health care for the 70-year-old bassist and that Meisner’s accountant, Thomas DeLong, will remain in charge of his financial issues.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge William Barry extended the temporary conservatorships of Ford and DeLong until Dec. 30, but their roles are scheduled to become permanent as soon as the lawyers present him with the proper paperwork to sign.
Meisner’s wife, Lana, suffered a fatal gunshot wound March 6 when she lifted a rifle that accidentally discharged in the couple’s Studio City home, according to police. Meisner’s lawyer, Bruce Fuller, filed a petition on his client’s behalf five days later asking that a conservatorship be established to provide for Meisner’s care, maintenance and support.
Fuller stated in his court papers that his client was “in a profound state of grief” and “barely able to accept the sudden and tragic loss” of his 63-year-old wife.
In April, the judge found that Meisner was of sound mind when he agreed to have Ford and DeLong as his temporary conservators. But their selections were criticized by James Newton, who filed a competing petition. Newton said he has known Meisner for years and that he speaks often with the musician’s children.
The settlement came on the day trial was scheduled to begin on the dueling petitions. Newton’s lawyer, Troy Martin, said the issues were resolved to the satisfaction of all parties, but he declined to elaborate.
Martin previously said that Newton preferred that Donna Bogdanovich be appointed to oversee Meisner’s medical needs and his estate. Martin said Bogdanovich is a former social worker and case manager who specializes in mental health issues.
Martin told Barry in a previous hearing that Newton was concerned that Meisner may not have had a sound mind when he agreed to the temporary conservatorships. He said Newton worried whether the singer-guitarist was getting proper medical care.
Martin said Meisner has a history of substance issues and mental health problems and that the musician once said he wanted to kill people with an AK-47 and then take his own life.
The Eagles were founded in 1971 by Meisner, the late Glenn Frey, Don Henley and Bernie Leadon. Meisner co-wrote and sang the hit, “Take it to the Limit.”
–City News Service
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