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Alan Chambers, 42

 There are some things, Greg Chambers said, you never forget.

For him, it will forever be the sight of his twin brother, Alan, hanging from his closet door at West Oaks Hospital in Houston.

Alan Chambers, 42, was admitted under suicide watch in March 2007 after taking an overdose of pills and trying to cut his wrist, according a state and federal inspection reports.

Greg Chambers said his twin was suffering from deep depression and living apart from his wife and children.

West Oaks Hospital staffers were supposed to check on Alan every 15 minutes, and the facilityâs log for March 22 said he had been checked as ordered.

But surveillance video showed a stretch of 26 minutes in which he was left alone, records from the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services say.

By the time a worker looked in on him, Alan had wrapped strips of linen around his neck and asphyxiated himself.

Greg, there for a visit, said he watched workers open Alanâs door and stand by stunned. Greg rushed past them to perform CPR but could not revive his twin, who was taken to the emergency room in a coma.

Afterward, Greg recalled, "I just collapsed. I started to cry. I just couldnât believe this happened."

Alan died six days later. Regulators fined West Oaks $25,000, noting in records that the hospital failed to protect him from harm.

The Chambers brothers, Alan and Greg

Portrait of Robin Fields

Robin Fields

Robin Fields is a reporter with ProPublica. She joined ProPublica as a reporter in 2008, became a senior editor in 2010 and served as managing editor from 2013 to 2022 prior to returning to the reporter role.

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