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Members Of Mass. Congressional Delegation Call For Federal Investigation Into Missing Veteran's Death

This article is more than 2 years old.

Members of Massachusetts' congressional delegation are calling for a federal investigation into the death of a veteran who was found in the stairwell at a Veterans Affairs hospital campus more than a month after he was reported missing.

Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Edward Markey, and Reps. Seth Moulton, Lori Trahan and Katherine Clark have asked the the VA's inspector general to investigate 62-year-old Tim White's death at the Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital campus.

"It is undisputed that a veteran died on VA property and that his family deserves a thorough, independent investigation by relevant authorities," the lawmakers said in a letter Wednesday.

The man's daughter told The Boston Globe that his family is "waiting for answers."

"It is disheartening to see everyone pointing fingers and placing blame on each other before all the details are known," said White's daughter, Karen.

Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan's office said this week that her office is investigating the death and the failure to find White's body for weeks.

"For a veteran who served the country to die alone in a stairwell and not be discovered for that long a period of time is outrageous," Ryan told the Globe.

His body was found Friday in the same clothes he was wearing when he was last seen May 8, Ryan's office said. He was reported missing May 13 by an employee of Caritas Communities, which operates a residential home for veterans on the campus of the VA hospital. The man was living in the residential area on campus and was allowed to come and go freely, Ryan's office said.

The door to the stairwell where his body was found is in the same building where he was living and is about 20 yards from his room, the district attorney's office said. His body was found by another resident at the facility, and it appears he had been dead for an "extended period," the office said.

Investigators will examine the policies and procedures at the facility, as well as the relationship between the hospital and Caritas, her office said.

A statement from Caritas said it leases a portion of a building at the hospital to provide housing to formerly homeless veterans. It said the man's body was found in an emergency exit stairwell that is outside the Caritas facility and "solely controlled by the VA."

A preliminary report from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner suggests there was no trauma, and there is no foul play suspected, the district attorney said.



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