Elderly woman found living with body of deceased husband

Published: Mar. 10, 2014 at 3:23 PM CDT|Updated: Apr. 6, 2014 at 11:08 PM CDT
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Officers found the woman and the body of her husband, who had died weeks before, during a...
Officers found the woman and the body of her husband, who had died weeks before, during a welfare check Friday.

DECATUR, AL (WAFF) - The Morgan County Coroner said a Decatur woman suffering with Alzheimer's disease had been living with the body of her deceased husband for weeks.

Decatur Police officers responded to a home on the 1600 block of Chestnut Street on Friday to perform a welfare check on 78-year-old Doris Kirby and her husband, 75-year-old Jessie Claude Kirby. Family and friends were concerned because they had not heard from the couple in months.

When officers arrived, they saw Doris inside the house. They said Doris suffers from Alzheimer's and was not aware officers were trying to check in on them.

Officers looked through the windows of the house and discovered the body of Jessie lying in a bed. The officers made their way inside, where they found Doris alive, but in poor health.

Dean Hayes lives two doors down from the Kirbys and has known the couple for decades. She said she had a bad feeling when she looked out her window on Friday. "Police cars was up and down the road," she said. "To think that all of us live right here, this close, and none of us knew anything about it."

She said the Kirbys' son pulled up as an ambulance arrived on the scene, and that's when he told her about his father's death.

Coroner Jeff Chunn determined there were no signs of foul play and that Jessie died from natural causes. He estimated the death occurred about four weeks ago.

Doris Kirby was taken to Decatur Morgan Hospital to be examined and treated. She is listed in fair condition.

Neighbors said that in addition to Jessie Kirby's body, authorities also discovered the bodies of two dogs on the property.

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