Authorities say it appears a Des Moines man died early this (Friday) morning after becoming stuck outside in a wheelchair. The victim is identified as 65-year-old Leonard Nance.
Polk County Sheriff’s Deputy Jana Rooker says Nance was conscious, but unresponsive when two garbage haulers found him in his driveway at 6:30 a.m.) "It appears that Mr. Nance had gone out to possibly shovel and just didn’t realize that he wasn’t dressed for the environment," Rooker said.
The temperatures in Des Moines at the time Nance was found was 15-degrees below zero. It’s not clear how long Nance had been outside. Deputy Rooker says Nance live alone in a rural area on the southeast side of the city. "The homes out there aren’t very close together," Rooker said.
The garbage men called 9-1-1 after spotting a flashing beacon on Nance’s motorized wheelchair. They took him inside the home and tried to warm him up while waiting for an ambulance. Nance was pronounced dead at Iowa Methodist Medical Center just before 10 a.m.
An autopsy is scheduled to determine the exact cause of death.