Two men on assisted care were living with their dead caretaker in a Campbell River home.
Holly O’Connell had received a phone call from her brother-in-law who was living in a home on Galerno Drive in Campbell River.
He is developmentally challenged and so is a second man that lives with him. They were both being cared for by a third man who had been dead in his upstairs bedroom for between one and two weeks, however, the other men didn’t realize it.
“He said to me, ‘Holly can you bring some dinner because I haven’t eaten in a while and I’m exhausted, I’ve been cleaning up maggots’ and I said ‘Jordan that’s a sign of death’,” O’Connell told CHEK News.
It appears the man died of natural causes but the other two who he cooked for and generally watched over had no concept of time or that anything was wrong.
Holly says her brother-in-law Jordan just thought the smell was coming from the bathroom and repeatedly cleaned it, as well as the maggots coming from under the dead man’s door.
The deceased man had been renting the home and had placed an ad looking for roommates.
It was an arrangement that worked well for several months and O’Connell says Jordan and the other man really liked the man who died.
They ended up caring for themselves for nearly two weeks until Jordan called Holly because he was hungry.
“For them to be living in that for that amount of time is disturbing,” said Wade O’Connell, Holly’s father.
They’re now questioning how overworked careworkers must be that Jordan and his roommate weren’t checked on for that long.
Jordan’s roommate has a care worker, but Jordan’s disability is still being assessed after previously living on the streets.
“They need someone to keep an eye on them, this shouldn’t have happened in the first place,” said Holly O’Connell.
The two men now need a new home.
“I just think it wasn’t a proper living arrangement for them in the first place due to the finances they get they have to rent rooms and then they’re not really monitored, not supervised and I think that the federal and provincial governments need to have better housing for them,” added Wade O’Connell.
The Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction says it is now investigating what happened.
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