Death of elderly couple possibly heat related - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Death of elderly couple possibly heat related

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The home on Hawaii Drive where the elderly couple was found dead. The home on Hawaii Drive where the elderly couple was found dead.
The vehicle from the Vanderburgh County Coroner's Office on scene. The vehicle from the Vanderburgh County Coroner's Office on scene.

The bodies on an elderly couple were found on Monday night inside their stifling Evansville mobile home and the coroner believes the deaths are heat related.

The Vanderburgh County Coroner's Office identifies the couple as 73-year-old Paul Armes and his wife 66-year-old Marcella Armes.

Detectives tell 14 News it was well over 100 degrees when they went inside the home on Monday night. There is an air conditioning unit outside of the home but officials say it appears it wasn't working.

"The whole neighborhood is just shocked," said neighbor John Griffin.

Griffin has lived right down the road from the couple for the past four years.

"He would always go out and get a pizza and he'd come home. He'd honk and she'd come out and get it," said Griffin.

He says the two were very independent and usually stuck close to home.

"The air conditioning was always on. That shocked us when they said there was no air in that home," Griffin said.

Detectives says the couple's daughter called in a welfare check at 5:10 p.m. Monday afternoon. When police arrived, they found the couple and their pet bird dead inside the home with all windows and doors locked.

"The temperature check by our crime scene unit showed it to be somewhere in the area of 108 to 109 degrees inside." said EPD Sgt. Larry Nelson.

Nelson says the couple could have died days ago at the peak of the heat wave. The last time a family member had spoken to them, he says, was on July 1st when the temperature was a record breaking 105 degrees.

"The officers standing outside, they could hear the air conditioner click on, but the outside fan never came on, which indicates to us the air conditioner wasn't working," Nelson said.

Sgt. Nelson says the couple had two cars and a working telephone, but never called anyone or asked any neighbors for help.

"They never bothered anybody. It was just an elderly couple and they just kept to themselves," Griffin said.

Vanderburgh County Coroner Annie Groves says autopsies are set for Tuesday. 

We'll keep you updated. 

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