Aide gets probation for role in neglect

An aide who cooperated with a statewide grand jury investigation into the neglect that led to the death of an 80-year-old Korean War veteran has been sentenced to probation.

The aide, Marjory Koch, 44, was sentenced Tuesday by Blair County Senior Judge Hiram A. Carpenter to three years’ probation and a $400 fine.

Koch was the third and last person to be sentenced as a result of the investigation into the death of Kenneth “Slim” McGuire of Altoona, who died 21 months ago while he was a resident of Warner’s Home for the Aged.

Also charged in the case were Sherry Jo Warner, the owner and operator of the Altoona home, and Diana Frye, another aide at Warners. Warner received a jail term of three months to two years, while Frye was sentenced to 30 days to 24 months, less one day in prison.

Deputy Attorney General Heather Albright agreed to the probation sentence for Koch because she was the one employee at Warner’s who cooperated from the beginning.

Koch was in tears as she left the courthouse. Her attorney, Douglas Keating, said that “she feels horrible” about McGuire’s neglect.

Court papers outlining the testimony given by Koch before the grand jury indicated that McGuire had been seen by a doctor on July 21, 2011, and had been treated for a sore on his lower right leg.

He received treatment at the then Bon Secours Wound Clinic under the supervision of the Blair County Home Nursing Agency.

He was discharged from agency care on July 21, 2011, according to the grand jury presentment.

Koch testified before the grand jury that Warner did not train her on how to care for the residents of the personal care home. The only training she received on how to care for sores came from another aide, she testified.

McGuire had injuries to his legs, and Koch said she was never trained how to care for him.

She had 13 residents to care for during her daylight shift and that included bathing and dressing them and making sure they got to the dining area.