GRAND RAPIDS - Late last month, Roger and Karoline Benedict were found in their driveway after spending more than 20 hours outside in freezing temperatures.
Roger later told police that their driveway was completely snow covered when they returned home from the store. Roger fell on the ice, and when his wife tried to help him, she also fell and hit her head.
Roger survived, but had serious frostbite and hypothermia. Officials at Spectrum Blodgett tell Fox 17 he died on Friday.
We'll have more on how the couple is being remembered, tonight on Fox 17 News at Ten.
January 19, 2009
BERLIN TOWNSHIP - The Ionia County Sheriff's Department says an elderly woman is dead, and her husband is in the hospital after being found outside their home in Berlin Township.
Investigators say it appears Roger Benedict, 74, and his wife Karoline,
85, were in their vehicle when it got stuck in the driveway.
Roger and Karoline were found by a brother who lives across the street.
Roger was barely able to speak and Karoline was already dead.
Roger and his wife returned from the store but the driveway was almost completely snow-covered. Roger fell down on the ice.
"He has problems with his legs," said Sgt. Roger Vander Molen. "So he has problems getting up and it appears that his wife got out of the car to help him and went down also."
Police say it was a hard fall, Karoline hit her head. Roger couldn't get back up, so they sat there about 30 feet from the car in near-zero degree weather for 21 hours.
"He had a winter coat and shoes and stuff," said Vander Molen. "The female, she didn't have snow boots but had a light coat but not dressed for outdoor at all."
Neighbors say the couple loved to talk. Brook Meyers is a neighbor who works at the Sears in Ionia. She says they returned here years ago to take care of the family farm, and that the couple was inseparable.
"They basically were soul mates, that's what he always said that they were soul mates," said Meyers.
At this writing, 74 year old Roger is in serious condition.
The Sheriff's Office say they'll continue to investigate, but don't suspect any foul play.
UPDATE: Man Dies After Losing Wife to Bitter Cold
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