GLEN CARBON, IL (KTVI) – Police found the body of a Madison County woman in her driveway on Saturday. Her body was described as “in a frozen state.” Mary Kampwerth, 83, was discovered fully clothed with no signs of trauma to her body. Kampwerth was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police do not know how long she may have been outside. Based on evidence at the scene Kampwerth could have been in the elements since January 7th. Mail and newspapers at the home led investigators to this conclusion.
That Tuesday saw temperatures below zero, rising only into the twenties. It was four days after that when Kampwerth was found. Police thought they might have avoided any weather related deaths in the area.
“With the weather being the way it was and the road conditions and such we actually did feel like we were going to be pretty fortunate in this but the unfortunate happened,” Glen Carbon Police Chief John Lakin said. “We certainly feel sorry for the family. We wish we could have discovered her earlier but with the snow the way it was, that was almost impossible.”
The body was found in an area that would have made it hard for neighbors and postal workers to see it, even though it was just feet from busy Highway 159. Officers say the area would be especially difficult to see if it was partially covered with snow.
Additional laboratory and toxicology studies are being conducting after an autopsy results proved inconclusive. The coroner says only after those tests return will he be able to say if the death was weather related or not. If there is no evidence of heart attack, stroke, or other such problem, then it will be assumed that weather was the cause.
Funeral arrangements are being handled by Weber & Rodney Funeral Home of Edwardsville, Illinois. A spokesman there told Fox 2 the family had no comment.