The family of a retirement community resident who froze to death has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the facility and a care provider. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Genevieve Klimczak’s estate. The defendants are McHenry Villa and Home Instead, Inc.
According to court filings, Genevieve Klimczak, a 91-year-old Alzheimer’s patient and resident of McHenry Villa, was allowed to leave her room and the building in the community on February 12, 2012, through a door that could not be opened from the outside. McHenry Villa employees found her body the next morning. Temperatures the night before had reached as low as 7 degrees Fahrenheit. McHenry Villa offers 24-hour-a-day security, but Klimczak was allegedly outside for approximately twelve hours. Home Instead, Inc. caregivers were attending to Klimczak, who was a Chicago-area resident. She is survived by her niece and two nephews.
According to Ms. Klimczak’s nephew, David Lorenz, the retirement community had no system of alarms or cameras to monitor the residents. Lorenz said that McHenry Villa was aware that her aunt suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.
A spokesperson for McHenry Villa told CBS Chicago that she had not seen the lawsuit and could not comment.
The wrongful death lawsuit was filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County on February 6, 2013.