Beaten 81-year-old nun says she’s doing okay, despite attack

February 16th, 2011 by Staff

BRADENTON — Wearing sunglasses to hide her now black eyes, surprisingly, 81-year-old Sister Nora Brick said she’s doing okay.

“I feel like I’ve had a miracle,” she said from her hospital room, “because I came through this without any major damage.”

According to the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, Brick allowed a man she worked with to come into her house on 14th Street W in Bradenton to get a drink of water Monday night.

The man came inside her house, then dragged Brick into her bedroom and punched her in the face several times, deputies said. The man then left the scene on a bicycle.

Brick was taken to Manatee Memorial Hospital, where she was treated for a concussion.

The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office identified the man as Eliseo Ortiz, 51.

Investigators said they are actively looking for Ortize because they think he is dangerous. Deputies plan to get an arrest warrant if they don’t find him soon.

Brick said Ortiz came to her looking for money. When she refused, he became angry and hit her.

Despite what’s happened, Brick is not bitter. Instead, she’s sympathetic.

“Frustration… they could be moved to do something very irrational,” she said.

As Brick recovers from this attack, she said she’ll never make the same mistake she made this week again.

“I would like to never, never allow a stray person like that in my dwelling,” she said.

Friends concerned
Donald Gaudette, who works with Brick at the Stillpoint House of Prayer, said she is in bad shape.

“The wounds she has are superficial, but she looks like she’s been in a 15-round bout with a heavyweight boxer,” he said.

She is expected to be okay, although her friends said they think this incident may force her to retire.

Brick’s friends said she had helped Ortiz out in the past as part of her outreach.

“She’d take anybody in and help them out,” co-worker Ernie Bigelow said. “She helped this guy big time.”

Jeff Jeffries, who was helped by Brick, said he is furious to learn what has happened to her.

“If I could find that person, I’d probably go to jail,” he said.

Deputies said Ortiz should be considered a danger to the community. Anyone who has information as to his whereabouts should call 941-747-3011 or Crime Stoppers at 866-634-TIPS.

One Response

  1. John Taylor JR.

    This guy needs his butt kicked. Period.

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