Cause of Vernon man's death unclear

Foul play is not suspected in the death of a Gateway Shelter client Sunday.

The Vernon man, believed to be in his early 50s, was visiting the shelter at around 2:30 p.m.

He was at the top of the shallow set of stairs which lead to the facility’s resource room, in the basement, when he fell.

“The man was transferred quickly by ambulance to Vernon Jubilee Hospital, and he was then transferred to Kelowna General Hospital where he died at 8 p.m.,” said Barb Levesque, executive director for the John Howard Society which operates the shelter.

Levesque said the man was alone at the time, and video footage of the incident has been turned over to the RCMP and to the coroners office.

The man’s name has not been released.

The death is the latest in what Levesque calls a “really rough year” for deaths of clients and former clients of the society.

“It’s a really sad event when any of our clients pass away but this has been a particularly difficult year in terms of death,” said Levesque. “We have a sense it’s more than 10 people in the last 12 months.”

A spokesperson for the coroners service confirmed the death and said the cause is still under investigation.



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