Q: If someone started the process of obtaining a patent and did not complete the process can someone else reapply for it?
The original patent application is over 20 years old.
A: No. If it was published, then anyone can use it. Nobody can get a patent because (a) it is not new, and (b) they did not invent it.
Mr. Mlynek is correct that you cannot seek a patent in the US on an idea that you did not invent.
If you should seek a patent on an improvement to that old application, be sure that you submit the old application as part of your Information Disclosure Statement.
I hope this helps
Kevin E Flynn
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