Mike Vandevelde (from the first Roeselare same-sex marriage) has published a second book: “Falsely accused of grandmother’s death”

Mike Vandevelde (from the first Roeselare same-sex marriage) has published a second book: “Falsely accused of grandmother’s death”
Mike Vandevelde (from the first Roeselare same-sex marriage) has published a second book: “Falsely accused of grandmother’s death”

Mike Vandevelde has another book out. The reason is the death of his mother-in-law. “That was considered a suspicious death. With me as a suspect. I was interrogated and had to go to jail. But grandma turned out to have died of… corona.”

Mike Vandevelde is known in Roeselare because he ran a few chip shops and he married Ronny Derynck in 2003, which is recorded as the first gay marriage in the Rodenbach city. Ronny passed away in November 2020. In the meantime, he married again at the end of this year, this time to Gunther Pauwels. But Ronny has not forgotten “I still go to the cemetery three times a day”, says Mike, who now lives in Temse with his partner.

Last year Mike already wrote a book in which he explained his turbulent life. “Of those 4,500 have been sold”, it sounds proud. “We also did a whole tour with our book, from the coast to Limburg and even in the Netherlands. We also got to know a lot of new people.”

Night in the cell

And now there is a second book. And this for a sad reason. “I’ve been in prison. Unjustified!” says Mike. The reason is the death of Gunther’s mother, who has been living in the couple for a while. “After Gunther’s dad passed away, we took her in. Not an obvious choice, because she didn’t exactly have the easiest character”, Mike knows. Gunther agrees: “We have always had a dominant character. But I’m an only son and we couldn’t leave her alone.”

That didn’t happen, in fact, it was Mike who took care of grandma on a daily basis. “There was home nursing, but I also put her in the shower every day, made sure she took her pills, prepared food for her. And that while Gunther has gone to work. I do it out of love for my husband, just as I take care of daughter Ciana. She has a disability, but was also often treated harshly by grandma. Grandma suffered from a form of dementia in which the elderly apparently often start to blame. But in the long run it was no longer tenable.”

By Tuesday, July 12, the daily morning ritual was already reeling when Grandma stood in the shower and slipped. “She was a little out of whack, but we got her up and running. We called the service 100, the ambulance took her to the hospital. She also died there the same day. I didn’t believe my ears when the doctor announced that he should report this as a suspicious death. I then had to go to the police station and I also had to hand over my mobile phone. I was then interrogated for hours, all kinds of things go through your head. In the end I really had to go to the cell and spend the night there. But the next day, just after noon, the good news came. I was free again. After all, the law doctor had determined that grandma had died of… corona. I can assure you that a few hours in jail do something to a person.”

Mike has now written off his feelings. “The book is about the facts of July, but also about the not always easy life with grandma. But we also go back in time and Ronny is also discussed.”

From December, Gunther and Mike will be touring again with their book along with Ciana. People who want to purchase a copy can contact us via Facebook or send an email to [email protected]

The article is in Dutch

Tags: Mike Vandevelde Roeselare samesex marriage published book Falsely accused grandmothers death

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