AKRON, Ohio (WJW) — An 82-year-old woman reported missing from her nursing home on Tuesday, Nov. 8, was found dead in a wooded area behind the facility.
Joan L. Meredith, 82, was a resident of The Merriman, an assisted living and skilled nursing care facility at 209 Merriman Road in Akron, and had a history of dementia, according to information from the Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office. She was last seen by residents there on Sunday, Nov. 6, two days before she was found.
“Nursing home staff presumed she had taken a leave of absence from the facility with family,” said Medical Examiner Gary Guenther in a Thursday email to FOX 8.
Workers called Meredith’s family to ask when she would be returning, but family members said they did not pick her up. Nursing home workers then began searching the grounds around the facility and found Meredith in a wooded area behind the facility.
Meredith died of hypothermia, and the manner of her death was accidental, Guenther ruled.
A representative of the nursing home reached Thursday afternoon by phone said the facility is not yet prepared to release a statement.
FOX 8 is also working to get in touch with Meredith’s family members.
The 60-bed, for-profit facility has a two-star “below average” rating, out of a potential five stars, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Its staffing levels received the lowest one-star ranking, or “much below average.”
In the past three years, the facility has been cited six times during routine health inspections — which is below the state and national averages, however — and three times in infection control inspections. It’s been fined twice in the last three years by the federal government: a $20,000 fine in January 2022 and a $13,000 fine in March 2021.