Monday, March 10, 2014
By MICHAEL SHEPHERD Kennebec Journal
The 84-year-old Whitefield man who was poisoned by carbon monoxide on Christmas Day died Saturday, becoming the second fatality from December’s ice storm.
Mervyn Parmenter died at VA Maine Healthcare Systems-Togus 10 days after he and his wife, Madeline, were found collapsed in their home by a neighbor, Timothy Morin, who called 911.
Morin’s wife, Joan, and Parmenter’s brother, Roydon Parmenter of Augusta, said Parmenter died of kidney failure. They said he had a history of kidney problems and the carbon monoxide poisoning exacerbated his condition.
Madeline Parmenter, 83, survived the poisoning and is now at home, Joan Morin said.
On Christmas Day, Lt. Rand Maker of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office said first responders found a generator running in a closed garage on the first floor of the Parmenters’ split-level house. He said the garage door was accidentally shut, filling the home with carbon monoxide.
Joan Morin said that on Christmas Eve, she and her husband had been at the Parmenters’ house, toasting the couple on their 60th wedding anniversary.
After Timothy Morin found the couple and called 911, his wife said he called their home. Joan Morin, her daughter and her daughter’s boyfriend went to the Parmenters’ house and opened doors and windows. She said Mervyn had collapsed, wasn’t breathing and his face was blue. Madeline was breathing, but had collapsed.
Joan Morin said she slapped Mervyn and yelled at him, telling him to breathe. He took a breath then, she said.
On Christmas Day, the state was in the throes of its worst ice storm since 1998. More than 100,000 people lost power in Maine that week.
Timothy Woods, 50, of Knox was found dead in a garage on Dec. 24 after he was poisoned by carbon monoxide from a generator running inside, said Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety.
The day after Christmas, a spokeswoman at a Lewiston hospital said Mervyn Parmenter was in fair condition, while a nurse at MaineGeneral Medical Center in Augusta said Madeline Parmenter was there in stable condition. She recovered, but he eventually was moved to Togus, where Joan Morin and Roydon Parmenter said his kidneys couldn’t recover from the oxygen deprivation.
But he spoke often while hospitalized, and Joan Morin said he talked of making sure Madeline, who has health problems, would be OK without him.
“His concern to the very end was that his wife was taken care of,” Joan Morin said. “He was always thinking of other people.”
Michael Shepherd can be contacted at 370-7652 or at: