Cause released in Franklin County couple's death

Franklin County coroner rules 'natural causes'

State Journal staff report, Published:

The official cause of death for a husband and wife found dead in their home last month is “natural causes,” the coroner ruled.

Charles “Porkey” Kelly, 76, and Dora Alice Green Kelly, 55, were found dead inside their McCanns Lane home March 14.

Franklin County Coroner Will Harrod said autopsy and toxicology results show Dora Kelly died from an enlarged heart, with other heart complications contributing.

Charles Kelly died from pre-existing or underlying health conditions, Harrod said, including chronic heart and lung disease.

Harrod said it is also his opinion that Charles Kelly died two to three days before Dora Kelly, but the circumstances surrounding this are still undetermined.

Investigators originally suspected carbon monoxide poisoning might have played a factor in the couple’s death. Sheriff Pat Melton said numerous space heaters were found inside the home.

Harrod said test results show carbon monoxide levels were consistent to that of a smoker in both Charles and Dora Kelly.

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