news 6 days ago

Lawsuit alleges Pike County personal care home caused man's death

The Times-Tribune, Scranton, Pa. — Terrie Morgan-Besecker The Times-Tribune, Scranton, Pa.

Feb. 14-- Feb. 14--The widow of a man who died after the former administrator of a Shohola Twp. senior living home allegedly forced him to take a three-hour Uber ride to his home in New Jersey filed a federal lawsuit against the facility.

Jeanne Hamill of Toms River, New Jersey, says the actions of Tamara Singer of the Twin Cedars Senior Living center, 364 Little Walker Road, caused her husband, Eugene, to suffer a stroke and heart attack that later led to his death.

According to the suit, Eugene Hamill began residing at the Pike County center on July 6, 2018. Singer discharged him on Sept. 11, 2018, for financial reasons.

The suit, filed by Philadelphia attorney Steven McConnell, says Singer advised a licensing supervisor with the state Department of Human Services she planned to send Hamill, who suffered from multiple medical issues, to his home using the popular ride-hailing app. She was told not to do so but ignored the warning. Hamill vomited and became unresponsive during the ride and was taken to a hospital. He was later transferred to a nursing home, where he died Sept. 26, 2019.

"This cruel act was financially motivated, since defendants could no longer profit off Eugene as a resident," McConnell says in the lawsuit.

The lawsuit says the incident led the DHS to revoke Twin Cedars' license on Dec. 20, 2018. It continued to operate on a provisional license until it was recently sold to Little Walker Holdings, which also is named as a defendant as the successor to the prior owner.

The suit also names an unidentified attorney as a defendant, whom Singer purportedly contacted regarding Hamill's transfer. It seeks damages on several counts, including negligence, wrongful death and punitive damages.

Contacted Tuesday, Bayard Williams, chief operating officer for Little Walker, said Singer is no longer employed at Twin Cedars. He stressed that Little Walker just acquired the facility on Jan. 2 and had no role in the incident. He was shocked when advised of the lawsuit's allegations.

"She put the resident in an Uber? Oh, my God," Williams said.

Williams said Little Walker is operating the facility under a new license and strictly complies with all state regulations.

"I take regulatory compliance extremely seriously and that would never, ever, ever happen under Little Walker Holdings," he said.

Contact the writer:

tbesecker

@timesshamrock.com;

570-348-9137;

@tmbeseckerTT on Twitter

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