Carbon monoxide poisoning kills Lawrence Township

A 77-year-old township man is dead after he left his car running in the garage.

Jerry Nicholas died from carbon monoxide poisoning, Stark County Coroner’s Office Investigator Rick Walters said.

Officials are still investigating the death but Walters said it appears to be accidental and alcohol was not a factor.

Walters believes the man arrived at his Ledgeview Street NW home around 9 to 9:30 p.m. Wednesday after attending church services in Summit County. Nicholas parked the vehicle in the attached garage but failed to turn the vehicle off. He then went to bed.

Walters said they found the man’s church clothes neatly laying at the end of the bed.

Sometime during the night — between 2 and 3 a.m. — Nicholas woke up likely gasping for air and stumbled into the bathroom, where he collapsed, Walters said.

Nicholas’ granddaughter, who was supposed to stay at her grandfather’s house that night but whose flight was delayed, arrived at the home around 2 p.m. Thursday to find him in the bathroom and called 9-1-1, Walters said.

The woman was transported to Barberton Hospital by Lawrence Township Fire Department after she became ill from the gas in the home.

Walters said the vehicle was still running when officials arrived. The garage, he said, was on the opposite end of the home from Nicholas’ bedroom.

The level of carbon monoxide in the home was 50 times higher than normal, he said.

In the wake of recent storms that have caused power outages for many county residents, Walters reminds people using generators to keep them outside in an open space to prevent carbon monoxide injuries and deaths.