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The Journal Gazette

Thursday, January 11, 2018 1:00 am

Indiana voices

Sadly, a potentially lifesaving message

The brutal, subzero weather this winter is more than an inconvenience. It's potentially deadly to friends, neighbors and family members.

Just ask Dustin Bellinger, 36, of Wheatfield. Bellinger lost his mother the day after Christmas to a fatal cold-related incident.

The joy of the season, and the life of 71-year-old Marian Bellinger, were cut short Dec. 26 when she slipped, hit her head on some brickwork and froze to death outside her Wheatfield residence. Marian Bellinger had just been trying to take out the trash.

With grief still very fresh, her son now wants his family tragedy to serve as an important reminder to fellow citizens.

The well being of friends, neighbors and family members – particularly those who are elderly, live alone or have disabilities – should be regularly monitored, especially in the brutal cold we're likely to face again this winter.

And Bellinger's warning says nothing of the need for homeless individuals or residents who lose heat in their homes to be guided to available warming shelters.

Don't forget to check on your friends, family and neighbors during freezing weather. It may very well save lives.

– The Times of Northwest Indiana