Victoria senior dies after fall in home

Man fell in apartment; found by caretakers as he clung to life. He died Tuesday in hospital.

An 81-year-old Victoria man died in hospital Tuesday after falling in his apartment and lying undiscovered for nearly a week.

On Monday, building caretakers entered the man’s suite in the 108-unit independent living complex at 11 Chown Pl., run by the Gorge View Society, and found him clinging to life.

“Sometimes even with a lot of safeguards in place, there can be a perfect storm of people being away, misinformation, and I’m very aware of the feelings of the family, who are obviously devastated as all of us are,” said Jane Louie, administrator at Gorge View Society.

Louie said the society doesn’t provide daily monitoring of its residents, as many seniors prefer an independent lifestyle.

“We are independent living, and we encourage all our residents to know each other and let us know if there are any concerns,” she said.

Chown Place residents met this week to discuss the tragedy as well as current safeguards for monitoring.

Victoria police issued an advisory to seniors and their families Tuesday, after discovering a 55-year-old man in Esquimalt who had suffered from a debilitating fall and had been alone for four or five days.

“It is important that people wanting to maintain their independence, whether they are seniors or someone affected by health related issues, understand the importance of having regular contact with family, friends, an acquaintance in their building or neighbourhood or a community service,” said Sherri Dixon, program co-ordinator at James Bay new Horizons Society.

The society operates a no-charge seniors reassurance program, where trained staff provide daily check-in calls to seniors who live alone.

For more information, call 250 386 4432.

dpalmer@vicnews.com