A neighbour who died from her injuries is calling for a coroner’s inquest after her family were left without the support they needed to cope with the tragedy.
Sarah McNeill, who lives in the town of Tewkesbury, had been admitted to the University Hospital in Tewkegowrie, but her condition deteriorated and she was taken off life support two days before her funeral.
She was only made aware of her death when she was told by her family that her parents were being moved to a remote community.
She had only recently left the hospital.
“I’m devastated that I’m not going to get the support that I need,” McNeill told The Canadian Press.
McNeill and her husband have two children aged 12 and 16.
On the day of the funeral, McNeill said she was in the kitchen preparing dinner when her husband rang to tell her that she had been rushed to the hospital for tests and that her life support had been cut off.
She said she called her family and made the decision to take the last breaths of her life on Monday.
But McNeill was not told until a week later that her mother, her sister and sister-in-law were being transferred to a nearby community.
After being put on life support, McNeil was transferred to another hospital and, at 10 p.m. on Sunday, was transferred back to the main hospital.
McNeill has been told by both her family members and the hospital that her condition has deteriorated to critical, and her mother and sister have been transferred to the remote community of Kildare, where her sister- in-law lives.
The family had been living at the community since August 2016.
Tewkesfield’s deputy coroner, Peter Pugh, told The Huffington Post Canada that the family had asked for a public inquiry into the incident, but that it had been blocked.
In a statement to The Huffington Press, the hospital said McNeill had been transferred for “immediate assessment and treatment.”
“As a result of her condition deteriorating and her family not receiving timely notification of the outcome, the family’s request for an inquiry was denied,” the statement said.
“The family is now in the process of seeking an inquest.”
The statement did not provide further details about McNeill’s condition.
When asked if McNeill would be considered for an inquest, Pugh said: “No.
That would be a premature request.”
The coroner has the final say over whether McNeill will be examined at the inquest, but the decision is up to the coroner.
A spokesperson for the Department of Justice told The HuffPost Canada that McNeill could have her case heard in a coroner appointed by the chief coroner of Ontario.
The spokesperson did not have any further information on whether McNeil’s case was being considered for a coronial inquest.
Pugh said he was aware of the request for a inquest but said he did not know how long it would take to decide.
Asked why the family is not being told of the decision not to proceed with an inquest after McNeill died, the spokesperson said:”I don’t know.
There are other options that could be considered.
I’m just not sure we’re taking that option.”
McNeil is survived by her two children, aged 12, 16 and 17.
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