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Fri Feb 20, 2015, 01:16 AM

 

State asks: Why did Hazel Park veteran freeze to death?

The state ordered Consumers Energy Thursday to report on a natural gas service shutoff in a Hazel Park home where a Vietnam veteran died of hypothermia earlier this month.

John Skelley, 69, was found dead Feb. 1 in a home on West Pearl Street. Hazel Park police say Skelley died of hypothermia and other health issues. According to Consumers Energy, service was disconnected at the home on the afternoon of Jan. 19 and a tag with assistance and reconnection information was placed on the door...

But the company said it was not aware that Skelley was living in the home. According to the company's records, the service was in the name of Joseph Mixen, who requested natural gas service on Nov. 18, 2014. Mixen had previously lived at the home between March 2012 and May 2013 and had an outstanding balance of $760.28.

As a condition to restore service, he was required to make an initial payment and was then put on a payment plan for the outstanding balance with payments required every two weeks. According to Consumers spokeswoman Deborah Dodd, no payments were made after initial payment on Nov. 18. Dodd said shutoff notices were sent on Dec. 18, Dec. 24 and Dec. 31. Dodd said no mail was returned and the company had no phone number on record for Mixen.

MPSC staff are working to revise its rules on billing practices for residential service, which include provisions on shutoff procedures, medical emergencies and winter protection plans. The commission hopes the review and Consumers' findings can "avert a repetition of this tragedy," it said in a statement.

Hangin' with the Heroes, a metro Detroit-based organization that helps veterans, has pooled resources and raised money to cover Skelley's funeral. Founder Ron Gilmour said Skelley will receive a full military burial. Gilmour said he has been in touch with Skelley's family, including two of his children.

"This is something that was a massive undertaking for us," he said. "Within two hours of hearing about it, we decided on our course of action and through a lot of help and reaching out to get some publicity, we managed to make everything happen."

http://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/oakland/2015/02/12/vietnam-veteran-hypothermia-shutoff/23327507/



He's a vet, he has kids, but he died in a freezing Detroit winter.

But at least he'll get a decent funeral now that we've killed him.










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Reply State asks: Why did Hazel Park veteran freeze to death? (Original post)
ND-Dem Feb 2015 OP
lpbk2713 Feb 2015 #1
CaliforniaPeggy Feb 2015 #2
Kalidurga Feb 2015 #3
sabrina 1 Feb 2015 #4
Ramses Feb 2015 #5
Kaleva Feb 2015 #6
jberryhill Feb 2015 #8
Kaleva Feb 2015 #10
bluestateguy Feb 2015 #7
ND-Dem Feb 2015 #9

Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 01:21 AM

1. The cynic in me has to say ...




Why TF are they expressing concern after the fact?


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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 01:23 AM

2. You are exactly right and this is horrible.

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 01:27 AM

3. For the same reason Levi Cummings died...

Helping people who are destitute is not a priority. If it is it's very low on the priority scales. In some circles it's even seen as a weakness to want to help people in poverty even if all that means is raising wages of the working poor rather than raise taxes to give them needed services.

http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2014/11/20/3595130/winter-homeless-deaths/

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 01:31 AM

4. Support the Troops! Was there ever a more empty jingoistic phrase than that one. No Veteran should

even have to worry about having their energy cut off. A Civilized country would provide homes for all veterans. There should never be a homeless veteran in this country.

Cheney and the rest of the war criminals used the vets to promote their wars. Anyone who ever thought they cared one bit about the troops, needs their head examined.

What a sad story. What an indictment on this war mongering nation we live in.

RIP Soldier

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Response to sabrina 1 (Reply #4)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 01:34 AM

5. A large percentage of the homeless population in America

 

are veterans. We support the troops when sent off to fight illegal wars. When they come back broken, we shuffle them off to the streets. Its American hypocricy

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 01:39 AM

6. I think Joseph Mixen ought to be asked some questions over this.

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Response to Kaleva (Reply #6)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 02:09 AM

8. He seems to disappear from the story

 

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #8)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 03:33 PM

10. Yes. I wonder if Skelly was paying Mixen rent?

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Response to ND-Dem (Original post)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 01:41 AM

7. Uh huh

And there will be a lot of finger pointing, excuse making and paper pushing, and nobody will be held responsible and nothing will change.

Nobody will get fired and no policies will change.

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Response to bluestateguy (Reply #7)

Fri Feb 20, 2015, 03:57 AM

9. "Nobody will get fired and no policies will change." as per usual unless people make a stink

 

about things.

instead of making a stink about it, the vets are collecting money for his funeral. which is nice of them, but not enough.

I noted that the vets chapters are from Detroit suburbs (= wealthier).

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