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has resided most of the time in the township of Porter, Cass county, some 18 miles southeast of Cassopolis, on an 80 acres of land which he early secured and settled upon, and yet owns. As the result of improvements made by him and general enhancement of values the farm is now said to be worth about $6,000. His wife died in 1907. He has two sons: William, the older, born in 1868, a man of intemperate and dissolute habits, who has been separated from his wife for some 20 years and after his mother's death is shown in a fragmentary way to have for much of the time made his home on the farm, living with his father when the latter was there, sometimes working on the place, and at one time renting it of his father for $75 a year and the taxes. His conduct and management of affairs, though tolerated and at times cooperated in by plaintiff, is indicated to have been a very disturbing element in the latter's life, of which he at times complained emphatically to others. Harley, the younger son and defendant herein, is 47 years of age, was married in 1896, lived near and worked his father's place for a time, is a temperate man of indicated good character and responsibility and a farmer living with his family near Cassopolis. Plaintiff himself had in former years been confessedly addicted to periods of excessive intemperance. He states that he used to drink heavily at times and get drunk, that he took the cure for it down at Warsaw, where he stayed three weeks, and says: "After I came back, I continued to drink heavily. They said they couldn't do anything for me because I was what they call a periodical drinker." He also stated that the last time he got drunk was in Constantine, and added, "I ain't touched anything for ten years." He, however, told in another part of his testimony of drinking beer at a saloon in Elkhart sometime subsequent to the death of his wife (in 1907) after which he states that he
went into the street and "got kind of tired out and I just sat down to the side of the street," when a nephew of his named Jim came along and called his attention to the fact that a policeman across the street was watching. His nephew, who then looked after him, tells a story of subsequent proceedings not altogether in harmony with plaintiff's and that he then claimed to have lost $300. Plaintiff admitted so stating and that he turned his watch over to his nephew, who later returned it, but asserted he did not lose "a cent." After the death of his wife he was afflicted with rheumatism which increased until he became a permanent cripple and unable to walk without crutches. After his wife's death he remained on his farm for a time, then lived with families in the neighborhood for three years or more and then returned to his former home which he attempted to maintain with the assistance of William who was with him at times and the services of women whom he employed at different times with William's aid, and who left for various reasons. His troubles in that particular were acute at times even as told by him with variations. He bought a piano to influence one to remain, who was of musical temperament and for a time impressed him favorably. Her efforts upon it proved too noisy to suit him. She did not remain long and left him with the piano on his hands, which he had worry and trouble in disposing of. The last woman he had was secured by William through something in the nature of a matrimonial advertisement which she answered, and it was arranged according to approved methods in such cases, as described by plaintiff:
"Willie went down, * * * they was to meet at the street car, and she was to dress one way and he another, so that they would know one another," etc.
This woman proved in her conduct and treatment of him so unsatisfactory to plaintiff that he ordered
her to leave, which she refused to do, threatening, as he states, "to sue me for a year's wages and for insulting her and that scared me, got me all unstrung."
For some time before a guardian was appointed troubles in his household and farm affairs so "unstrung" plaintiff, as he apparently realized, that he was wont to discuss them with and ask advice of those he knew, importuning various of his friends and neighbors to take charge of his property and affairs for him. At times when discussing his real or imaginary troubles he would break down and cry. He frequently appealed on such occasions to his son Harley, defendant, and at times offered to deed him his property, which Harley declined to accept, referring to his brother William and his daughter, telling his father she ought to eventually have her father's share. He, however, advised with and tried to smooth over his father's troubles and made him welcome at his home where the latter went from time to time and remained as long as he cared to, but he did not want to live there, preferring to be at or near his own place. The winter before a guardian was appointed he telephoned for defendant to come to his place where he said he had been six days alone with only crackers and water and a little grease to eat. Defendant then cared for and took him home with him as plaintiff admits, and states he remained there about six weeks when he "went back home."
His unstrung condition over his feared inability to discharge his last woman servant, with which trouble he went to defendant, led to their going together to the probate judge where he was apparently agreeable to the guardianship proceedings then instituted. A hearing was had and the order of appointment made, from which no appeal was taken. That adjudication is not open to attack. The claim made and issue tendered by his subsequent petition before that court, and for
review here, is that he has since recovered from his mental infirmities which then justified the order. It was not then, and is not now, claimed plaintiff was idiotic, imbecile or insane. Sanity or insanity was not the issue although somewhat stressed by plaintiff. In addition to the power to appoint guardians for those totally void of rational mentality, as the idiotic, imbecile and insane, the court has authority to appoint guardians for those persons "who by reason of old age or disease are mentally incompetent to have the care, custody and management of their estate," as it also has in certain cases of minors, those given to excessive drinking, etc.
A line of plaintiff's assignments of error is directed against rulings of the court in rejection or admission of what was in its nature opinion testimony of certain witnesses. On the whole, wide latitude was given in that particular to both sides. Numerous neighbors, relatives, friends and acquaintances of plaintiff of varying periods of time and degrees of intimacy testified, as also men of medical knowledge. Their testimony, elicited under lengthy direct and cross-examinations, constitutes a generous record which cannot be reviewed in detail. Early in the trial the court stated and for the most part adhered to the rule that non-expert witnesses could only express opinions on plaintiff's mental condition as supplemental to stating facts or incidents which indicated some basis for the conclusions expressed. To this might be added-or the testimony of the witness must clearly show that such intimate and close relations have existed between him and the party under inquiry as to fairly lead to and warrant the conclusion that such permitted opinion will be justified by the witness' occasion and opportunities for observation. Paul v. Clements, 176 Mich. 251. Of defendant's three witnesses, admission of whose testimony is assigned as error, one was a
grandson, a graduate of the Cassopolis high school and a school teacher, who had known his grandfather all his life, with familiar knowledge of his characteristics and conduct of his affairs as he grew older. He related incidents of eccentric talk and acts of plaintiff in later years. Another was an old and near neighbor of 45 years' acquaintance with whom plaintiff had discussed his troubles and asked to take charge of his property for him. He had a neighborly familiarity with plaintiff and how he managed his affairs and told of incidents in that connection in recent years which impressed him as irrational and peculiar. The other witness, Dr. Planck, was plaintiff's long time family physician, had known him 30 years, had recently attended him when ill, met and talked with him often on the road, at his home and elsewhere. Since his wife's death plaintiff had frequently told his troubles to him and in doing so importuned the doctor to take charge of his property and business affairs for him. This witness expressed the opinion that plaintiff was not mentally competent to have the care and management of his property. On cross-examination he answered that he had not said plaintiff was insane and did not so consider him. He, however, adhered to the opinion that he was mentally incompetent to care for and manage his property. In the course of his testimony he stated he came to that conclusion three years previous and then advised plaintiff he should have a guardian; that impressed by his various talks he tested him somewhat, saying:
"I proposed various schemes to him regarding his property, and some of them were very absurd, I think, as sort of feelers to see what his notions were, and he agreed with me. I could make him agree to anything, practically."
These witnesses were qualified to testify as they were permitted. Of those things in their testimony