Neighbors of old Helen Wilburn were shocked when they learned the 67-year-old women was found dead in her home Monday, where coroners say she lay lifeless for over a month.
Wilburn, who had a history of heart problems died of natural causes, but senior advocates say the time it took to discover Wilburn was not natural. Silver Key Senior Services CEO John Morse says this illustrates the importance of developing good relationships with your neighbors, especially if they are senior citizens.
"It's important for neighbors to just pay attention and care," said Morse. "When you start to see something out of place, call somebody."
Morse says one thing to look for is an over-flow of uncollected newspapers or mail. In Wilburn's case, a mail carrier noticed the excess and suggested Wilburn's neighbor call the police.
Morse says Seniors can help protect themselves too. For example, with devices like the Life Line pendant to press during emergencies, and Silver Key's Calls of Reassurance program where volunteers call Seniors every morning. For more information on either program, call Silver Key at 632-1521.