Family of man beaten and left for dead searching for answers

CHICAGO -- A man who was beaten to within an inch of his life and lay unknown in a hospital for an entire week has been identified by family members who saw his photo on social media.

64-year-old Luis Ocasio remains in a coma at Illinois Masonic Medical Center after he was beaten and left for dead in Logan Square. Now his stricken family is grappling with what to do next.

“He was brought in, he was badly beaten, and he was robbed,” said Ocasio’s niece, Angela Gamez.  “He had a lot of blood in his brain. They had to remove half of his skull, he has no pain medicine, he hasn’t opened his eyes.”

Ocasio has been fighting for his life in a hospital bed for the last seven days, struggling to breathe, his brain swollen as he remains in a coma. Gamez says the family has been given three bad options: two risky surgeries or withdrawing care. She says she’s not ready to let go until she gets some answers.

“Who called the police? Where’s his bike? How did they see him? Was he beat up by gang members, or was he hit? What? Who? I just want a little piece of closure,” Gamez said.

Police say Ocasio was found somewhere in the 2000 block of N. Humboldt Blvd. around 4:00 a.m. He was brought to Illinois Masonic Medical Center and authorities asked the public for help identifying the non-responsive patient. After his picture was posted on social media, his family realized it was Ocasio.

"If somebody’s involved with this, just come forward – even if it was an accident – that’s fine. There are accidents. Just come forward, so we can have some closure,” Gamez said.

Ocasio is one of 10 siblings. Never married, he took care of his 92-year-old mother.

If the family were to make the difficult decision to end his medical care,they would need help with funeral costs, and have set up a GoFundME page for anyone who wants to help with that effort.