Former “Half-Ton Man” Patrick Deuel is almost immobile again

Patrick Deuel, former Half-ton man is almost immobile again

Patrick Deuel, known as the “Half-Ton Man” who lost more than half his weight after a life-saving gastric by-pass surgery in 2005, is almost immobile again. He cites depression from being away from his wife as the main cause of his recent weight gain.

Gastric Bypass

Patrick Deuel, former Half-ton man is almost immobile again

Patrick Deuel, 47, has struggled with weight issues all his life, but by the time Discovery Health featured him in a documentary special in 2005 he was tipping the scales at 1,072 lbs. Living in Valentine, Nebraska at the time, he had not left his room in seven months, or left the house in seven years. His wife Edie claims that she fed Patrick his favorite foods because he loved him, and that she hadn’t “realized how bad it had gotten.” In the documentary Patrick tells the camera that he if something he wants is denied, he’ll “rip you to shreds.” This type of demand for and constant supply of food caused Patrick to balloon to the startling weight that threatened his life.

In 2005, when the documentary was filmed, Patrick’s health was deteriorating at an alarming speed. He couldn’t so much as move himself, his heart was failing, and his eyes had a dark, sunken look. He was in extreme peril and was forced to lay on his stomach to prevent his organs from being crushed. His skin was oozing pus from unhealed sores, and the stress his body was under meant death was imminent.

The Discovery Health documentary, which reached over 5 million viewers, chronicled the drastic measures needed to get Deuel out of his house. His bedroom wall was knocked down, and a special ambulance was needed to transport him to Avera McKennan Hospital in South Dakota where he received the gastric bypass surgery. After the surgery Deuel shed half of his weight, though he didn’t completely stick to the diet as planned. His wife still fed him the fatty, sugary, and salty foods he craved, though presumably less of them, while he stayed in a obesity recovery clinic for a year.

Success and setbacks


After returning home Deuel continued losing weight, but after hitting a low weight of 370 lbs, he started gaining again. Never one to stick to doctor’s orders, he refused to quit smoking or to cut out unhealthy foods altogether. By 2007 he was already back at 560 lbs, but still grateful to be able to get around and move despite having diabetes and congestive heart failure. Throughout his ordeal Deuel has insisted that genetics is to blame for his enormous weight struggles, while snacking on cheese cubes and chips and lunching on buckets of KFC.

Losing mobility

Patrick  has now gained back most of his weight, and is in danger of becoming immobile again. He says his most recent setback is due to depression from being away from his wife, Edie, who had to movie away for work due to the credit crunch.

Last month Deuel was reunited with Edie, and they moved into a new home. He says that Edie’s presence motivates him to eat right and start losing weight again, but he hasn’t started his new habits yet. He has plans to start eating right and exercising when they get settled in their new home. For Deuel, of course, “eating right” and “exercising” has a different meaning than most: it doesn’t mean incorporating healthy fruits and veggies and cutting out saturated fats,  just eating less fried chicken and pizza.

Below is a photo gallery of Patrick now, and in the past, including pictures as a baby, young adult, and at his heaviest weight.

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  • Hey, here’s a question. Who’s feeding this guy? He or she or they should be thrown in prison. Then watch how fast this guy will lose weight so he can get up and answer the door himself when the pizza delivery guy comes.


      AMEN ….. if his wife truly loves him she will stop feeding him!!

  • promdresses

    oh“““Hope that he will get better as soon as possible…lose the weight can be more healthy

  • nick chan

    kathcom I agree, the court should forbid KFC and walmart to sell him any junk food
    The people around him are making him fat !

  • tara

    he must be somewhat an abusive husband, while his wife must have some kind of OCD… that’s totally a dysfunctional marriage

  • Don

    When I first heard about this guy I felt sorry for him. No more. If he wants to live he knows what he needs to do. Other people have bent over backwards to help him. It’s up to him to stop eatimg himself to death! Genetics? Just an excuse. You don’t get to a 1000+ lbs just from genetics.

  • James

    Dear Patrick, I know what you are going through. I too am over weight & battle with depression. I also lie to myself and everyone around me. I don’t mean to but I do. Until you change your mind, you are not going to loose the weight. And like me you are not ready to change your mind just yet. I wish I could hug you and talk to you. I totally except you as you are what ever you weight is. I think you want the world to just except you as you are. And leave you alone. I understand what you are going through. Best of luck to you.

    • Mary Long

      You are very kind. And you are also correct. Until he and anyone else, including myself, is ready to change their minds, they will continue on the same road. Despite depression or whatever else has become a stumbling block to improving your health and life, there hopefully comes a day when you say, Enough! I am thankful that I have at last reached that point and am steadily losing using good old fashioned calorie counting, exercise and the will power that is inside each of us. The struggle is real, but it is possible to prevail.You hold the key. Wishing you the best <3

  • Skull Smasher

    All that money spent on his useless fat ass. I could have bought several new cars…

  • Elly

    They should have let him die imho. There are millions of children in this world who have to work to survive, meanwhile this “adult” wasted 100 times more money than he needs to survive to get immobile with fat, then the same amount to be saved form himself. Some people should be given up upon.

    As for the “I’ll rip you to shreds” comment, here’s what French philosopher Jacques Ellul said on the condition of man in modern mass society: “Because men are in a group, and therefore weakened and in a state of psychological regression, they pretend all the more to be “strong individuals”. The mass man is clearly subhuman, but pretends to be superhuman”.

    • Selena Buscamp

      I agree with you. Some cases are hopeless.

    • Mary Long

      No danger of him ripping anyone to shreds. He can’t move fast enough to catch anyone now, let alone when he was an immobile blob of blubber. All he can or could do is bellow angrily and berate his co dependant wife. He is in ssvere denial and his wife is not doing him any favors catering to his demands.At first, I felt sorry for him. But after all the help he ungratefully received ,at the end of the day, the only one who can truly help him is himself. If he ever faces reality and accepts that fact, there may be hope for him. But time is marcbing on and will one day run out for him.I myself am obese, but nowhere near as much as him. However, after years of doing as I wanted, I finally had to wake up and realize that I am the only one who can improve and control myself. Others can encourage, which is great. But I have to put forth the effort myself. Ihave lost almost 30 lbs so far, through calorie counting and exercise. Guess what? It works and I am determined to reach my goal . It all starts with me!

  • Steven Mathews

    How pathetic, he blames everyone and everything but himself.