Brian Wilson, left, and his wife Melinda Ledbetter arrive at the 73rd annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, Calif.,  in 2016. Jordan Strauss/Invision via Associated Press, file

LOS ANGELES — Brian Wilson, the Beach Boys founder whose life was chronicled in the movie “Love & Mercy,” was placed under a conservatorship Thursday more than three months after the death of wife Melinda Wilson, who was his primary caregiver.

Wilson’s publicist, Jean Sievers, and business manager LeeAnn Hard were appointed Thursday as conservators. Hard is also trustee of the estate of the singer and musical innovator, who has dementia. The February petition seeking the conservatorship stated that Sievers and Hard “have had a close relationship with Mr. and Mrs. Wilson for many years, and Mr. Wilson trusts them.”

The conservatorship, approved by Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Gus T. May, covers Wilson’s person only – i.e., decisions related to his personal care and health care decisions. The 81-year-old’s estate is handled by his trust.

“The court finds that the proposed conservatee consents and does not object to the conservatorship of the person,” May wrote Thursday in a document obtained by The Times. “The court finds from clear and convincing evidence that a conservatorship of the person is necessary and appropriate in that the proposed conservatee is unable to care for his/her person and the conservatorship is the least restrictive alternative needed for the protection of conservatee.”

The primary composer behind the “Pet Sounds” album and most of the Beach Boys music, in addition to his own solo work, “has a major neurocognitive disorder,” according to the court, “and lacks capacity to give informed medical consent for medications.”

The February petition stated that Wilson has been taking medication for dementia and is incapable of self-administering medicine and sticking to his medication schedule. His psychiatrist, Dr. Stephen S. Marmer, said in a declaration that Wilson has major impairments in information processing and alertness.


Melinda Wilson had taken care of her husband’s daily living needs and was also named as his agent for health care in his advance health directive. Hard and Sievers will handle arrangements for his care moving forward, and Wilson will continue living in his home. The judge also indicated that Wilson’s children would be looped in with nurses regarding their father’s care and would be consulted on any “material related healthcare decisions.” Wilson has seven children – two, Carnie and Wendy Wilson,  with first wife Marilyn Rovell and five with Melinda.

Brian, who was divorced from Rovell in 1979 and had been reclusive for years, met and dated Melinda Ledbetter on and off from 1986 to 1989. Psychologist-cum-Svengali Eugene Landy oversaw much of their courtship, and they eventually split. They reconnected years later and married in 1995, several years after the musician got free from Landy’s controversial treatment.

“I regained my life when the Dr. Landy program was terminated,” Wilson told The Times in 1998. “She [Melinda] helped me get back into the swing of things. I started dealing with society and becoming a part of it again.”

Their relationship was chronicled in the 2015 feature “Love & Mercy,” starring Paul Dano and John Cusack as Brian and Elizabeth Banks as Melinda.

Upon Melinda’s Jan. 30 death, her husband posted a statement on his website that poignantly expressed his grief.

“My heart is broken. Melinda, my beloved wife of 28 years, passed away this morning. Our five children and I are just in tears. We are lost,” he wrote.

“Melinda was more than my wife. She was my savior. She gave me the emotional security I needed to have a career. She encouraged me to make the music that was closest to my heart. She was my anchor. She was everything for us. Please say a prayer for her.”

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