PORTLAND – The mother of a man who lay for five days on the floor of his University of Southern Maine office after suffering an apparent massive stroke said she wants campus police to conduct more careful and frequent checks of university buildings.
David Norton, a senior communications specialist for the University of Maine System, died Oct. 15 at Maine Medical Center, five days after he was found by USM police in his office in an isolated wing of the Science Building in Portland. Police and his family believe Norton lay alone and ill in his office from the Friday before Columbus Day weekend until the following Wednesday. The campus was closed for the holiday weekend.First off, condolences to Mr. Norton's family. Reading the article, it seems like he was a very nice guy that worked hard and had lots of friends. This is truly a tragedy, and it seems like the best possible result would be for positive changes to occur as a result of this. The USM system claims that it isn't feasible to conduct daily office checks because of the size of the campus; in today's electronic age there has got to be a better solution than for some poor guy to suffer in his office for five days unnoticed.
Someone in comments brought up an interesting point: Doesn't the University have cleaning crews? They also mention that his car was ticketed three times over the weekend - none of this raised any flags as he was known to leave his car in the lot when he went on hiking trips. It sounds like this is one of those "20:20 Hindsight" deals where, knowing what happened after the fact, all the pieces fit neatly together. It's hard to imagine how much could be done differently - this was a guy who often worked odd hours, left his car on campus over the weekend, and had little daily oversight.
See! He should have had a blog so folks would know something was wrong if nothing got posted!
That is all.