Two Metro-East women on oxygen die after homes lose power -

Two Metro-East women on oxygen die after homes lose power

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By Brendan Marks By Brendan Marks

MADISON COUNTY, Ill. ( -- Two deaths in the Metro-East may have been caused by wintry weather conditions and related power outages on Thursday, according to officials.

Emergency responders were called to a home on Wild Horse Court in Troy, Ill. around 10 a.m. Thursday. Sandra Brinker, 63, was found unresponsive inside the residence, which had been without power for several hours due to powerful winds that swept through the area.

Brinker was transported to Anderson Hospital, where she was later pronounced dead.

Shirley Spruill, 66, was found dead around 5 p.m., less than an hour after losing power to her home in Alton, Ill. Authorities say the residence lost power after a tree fell on a nearby transformer.

In both cases, officials say the deceased suffered from medical conditions that required supplemental oxygen from an electrically powered unit.

Authorities advise family members with relatives dependent on electrical power to plan ahead for winter storms and other emergencies.

More than 75,000 Ameren Illinois customers lost power as a result of Thursday's winter storm.

According to the release, funeral services for Sandra Brinker are being arranged by Hutchinson Funeral Home in Florissant. Funeral arrangements for Shirley Spruill are under the direction of  Harrison Funeral Home in Alton.

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