Claremont is home to 35,000 residents, the largest portion of whom are in their mid-thirties and raising their families. Claremont is dotted with parks and recreational facilities. Despite the overall pleasant environment that is Claremont, there are instances when something or another tragic happens in the community. An example of a tragic happening in Claremont is found in a situation in which an unattended death is found.

Unattended Death in Claremont

An unattended death is one in which a person passes away, usually in his or her home. No one is around at the time of death. What really distinguishes an unattended death is the grim reality that it is not promptly discovered. A typical unattended death is not discovered for days, weeks, or even months after the individual passes.

During that time period, the decomposition process occurs and results in the release of what is known as biohazardous pathogens. These include airborne and bloodborne pathogens. These substances can pose a serious threat to the health and wellbeing of anyone who comes into contact with them. Indeed, there can be pathogens released through the decomposition that can prove to be deadly.

An Example of a Claremont Unattended Death

Death comes in many forms. Many people hope that they will die in their sleep. That was the case with a woman named Margaret, who taught school in Los Angeles before her retirement. Margaret had been a resident of Claremont for about 30 years.

What Margaret did not realize was that she had a heart condition. After her death, a determination was made by the LA County Coroner that she likely suffered from that heart condition for a number of years. The Coroner concluded that it was her heart that finally gave out and caused her death. The Coroner went on to indicate that Margaret died in bed, likely in her sleep. The police that investigated the scene of Margaret’s death, which occurred in her home, confirmed that it was also their opinion that Margaret died in bed, likely in her sleep.

There was an additional grim aspect to Margaret’s death. Her body was not found for over a month after she died, as is the case with many an unattended death.

Margaret had never married. She lived alone. She did have some friends, mostly teachers or former teachers. She was not one to socialize often.

Margaret did attend church most Sundays. However, beyond going to services, she did not participate in any other church activities. Thus, even at church, her absence was not immediately noted.

In the end, it was the postal carrier that ended up reaching out to the Claremont Police Department when he became concerned about the woman. The reason that occurred was that after about a month, Margaret’s mailbox had filled to capacity.

The police made a welfare call to Margaret’s home. They ultimately entered the residence, only to find her remains in her bed, where they had obviously been for some time. The evidence at the scene suggested that Margaret died of natural causes, although the LA Coroner was dispatched to the scene as well, including to retrieve the body for forensic evaluation and an autopsy.

Unattended Death Cleanup

Once the police and Coroner finished their work at the scene of the death, they released their control over the premises. A couple of days passed before Margaret’s niece and heir was located, a woman living in Portland, Oregon.

Even though the body had been removed from the property, the dangerous situation associated with bodily pathogens continued to exist at the premises. The niece reached out to a biohazard cleanup service to undertake proper and comprehensive remediation of the situation at the residence. The niece’s objective was to put the residence up for sale as soon as possible.

Because Margaret’s niece would not be at the residence prior to the unattended death cleanup, she undertook a course of due diligence to ensure that she selected a reputable, trustworthy biohazard remediation service. This process included checking references and making sure the biohazard cleanup service was appropriately licensed, certified, bonded, and insured. When the process was complete, Margaret’s niece met with a Claremont Realtor and the home was placed on the market for sale.

Grief Counselors and Support Groups in Claremont, California

In the aftermath of an unattended death, some family members or other people associated with the deceased person may find they need professional support and assistance. There are some trauma and grief counselors in Claremont that can assist in this area, including:

Sharon D. Heaston, MFT
675 W Foothill Blvd, Suite 302
Claremont, California 91711
(909) 945-8894

Leslie Stone
445 W. Foothill Blvd., Suite 109
Claremont, California 91711
(909) 332-3187

Jeanie Kieley-Chavez
428 W Harrison, Suite 101B
Claremont, California 91711
(909) 624-4283

VNA Hospice and Palliative Care
Joslyn Center – Weinberger Room
660 North Mountain Avenue
Claremont, California 91711
Calendar of support group meeting times can be viewed here.
For more information, please contact Scott Ramsey (909) 447-7241 or jramsey@vnasocal.org.

VNA Hospice and Palliative Care
Joslyn Center – Weinberger Room
660 North Mountain Avenue
Claremont, California 91711
Calendar of support group meeting times can be viewed here.
For more information, please contact Scott Ramsey (909) 447-7241 or jramsey@vnasocal.org.

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Photo Courtesy of The Wandering Angel.

Author

Emily Kil

Co-Owner of Eco Bear Biohazard Cleaning Company

Together with her husband, Emily Kil is co-owner of Eco Bear, a leading biohazard remediation company in Southern California. An experienced entrepreneur, Emily assisted in founding Eco Bear as a means of combining her business experience with her desire to provide assistance to people facing challenging circumstances. Emily regularly writes about her first-hand experiences providing services such as biohazard cleanup, suicide cleanup, crime scene cleanup, unattended death cleanup, infectious disease disinfection and other types of difficult remediations in homes and businesses.