Sheriff Braudis back home from hospital |

Sheriff Braudis back home from hospital

ASPEN – Pitkin County Sheriff Bob Braudis was released Friday from Aspen Valley Hospital and is expected to return to work in at least three weeks, Undersheriff Joe DiSalvo said.

For the next two months Braudis – hospitalized with a major upper respiratory infection – will undergo physical therapy to regain strength in his lungs. Afterward, he’ll begin cardiovascular rehabilitation to regain his stamina, DiSalvo said.

Braudis had been in the care of AVH for nearly a week, after spending time in the St. Joseph’s Hospital in Denver, where he also spent three days in the intensive care unit. Braudis has declined comment since he was hospitalized.

“Surprisingly, he’s very happy and he’s doing well,” DiSalvo said. “He’s happy to be home.”

The sheriff, 65, has been walking on his own and has been in the company of his closest friends, DiSalvo said. Braudis lives with his girlfriend, DeDe Brinkman, in Aspen.

“I can’t walk half a block without someone asking me how Bob is doing,” DiSalvo said.

Even though Braudis, who fell ill while he was vacationing in Europe, has not been working since he left for vacation in late November, he is kept apprised of what’s happening at the sheriff’s office, DiSalvo said.

“He asks everyday, ‘What’s going on?” DiSalvo said.

Except for the time during which Braudis was in ICU, the sheriff continues to make day-to-day decisions when it comes to the sheriff’s office, said DiSalvo, who is second-in-command.

Braudis was elected sheriff of Pitkin County in 1986. There are no term limits for the county sheriff, assessor and clerk. Braudis is up for re-election in November.

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