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Death of Midvale couple under investigation

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Posted at 9:18 PM, Feb 03, 2014
and last updated 2014-02-03 23:35:57-05

MIDVALE -- An elderly couple in Midvale was found dead in their home over the weekend with no power.

Rocky Mountain Power said it offers numerous programs to keep customers from being disconnected.

“We encourage our customers to call us at the first sign of any trouble in paying their power bill, we have skilled representatives who go to great lengths in trying to get customers current on their payments,” said Jeff Hymas, spokesman for Rocky Mountain Power.

Rocky Mountain Power couldn’t comment on the specifics regarding the couple found dead in the cold Friday night because of confidentiality, but police confirmed when they found the couple their power had been shut off and there was no heating in their home.

“We weren’t able to find anything suspicious about their deaths, there was nothing out of place no sign of trauma to any of the victims the big question here is why both of them were deceased," said Lt. Justin Hoyal with Unified police.

The medical examiner said Howard Durrant, 79, and Sharell Sund, 87, died from a combination of natural causes and the elements related to the cold.

"You know this is just a really unfortunate situation that happened here and I think it’s important that if you have elderly neighbors that you are keeping an eye out for them check on them,” Hoyal said.

Hymas said Rocky Mountain Power is saddened by the news of the couple’s death.

"Disconnection is only a last resort -- if customers will just communicate with us and work towards getting back on track we can almost always help them to do that,” Hymas said.

Hymas said there are a number of assistance programs in place to avoid tragedies like this. The power company also offers the third-party notification plan, which allows another person or social agency to receive a copy of your overdue notice.

Visit Rocky Mountain Power for more information.