97-year-old twins freeze to death after falling outside

Two 97-year-old twin sisters apparently froze to death Saturday after they fell outside and were stranded overnight just steps from one of their Rhode Island homes. CNN image

BARRINGTON, R.I. (AP) — Two 97-year-old twin sisters apparently froze to death Saturday after they fell outside and were stranded overnight just steps from one of their Rhode Island homes.

Jean Haley, of Barrington, was trying to call for help and fell after noticing her sister, Martha Williams, of East Providence, had fallen also, Barrington Police said.

The sisters had returned to Haley’s home from dinner Friday night with their 89-year-old sister. The younger sister, who lives elsewhere in Barrington and wasn’t named by police, left the two sisters at some point before the falls, police said.

They said Williams was going to her car to leave Haley’s home when she fell in the driveway, near the rear of her vehicle. When Haley attempted to re-enter her home to call for help, police said she may have tripped on a rug in the garage and fallen.

A neighbor found the twin sisters the next morning. They were rushed to Rhode Island Hospital in Providence in critical condition, but died a short time later.

Temperatures were freezing with a wind chill overnight Friday into Saturday, when much of New England saw some if its coldest temperatures of the winter.

Police Chief John LaCross called the deaths a “tragic loss.” A man who identified himself as a grandson answered the phone at Haley’s home Sunday and said the family would be commenting later.

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