Wenatchee Senior Living Center Sued For Negligence in Man’s Death
The family of a Prestige Senior Living resident who died last year outside the senior center in the snow is suing the business on claims of negligence, abuse, abandonment, and medical malpractice.
Attorneys for the son of Edmund Andrewjeski filed a lawsuit Monday in Chelan County Superior Court, which repeatedly claims Prestige Senior Living and its employees “breached their duties of care and failed in their responsibilities to keep Mr. Andrewjeski safe and alive through a series of negligent acts and errors.”
Andrewjeski lived at Prestige Senior Living from Feb. 2017 until his death Dec. 30, 2022.
According to the lawsuit, he suffered from a number of health issues, and on December 29, 2022 asked staff at the living center to take him to the emergency room because he was suffering from severe constipation.
A Prestige employee took him to Central Washington Hospital where he received treatment that afternoon and evening.
Upon his discharge, the hospital called Prestige and spoke to an employee who said it was OK for Andrewjeski to be taken back to the center by Apple City Taxi or a "cabulance."
The lawsuit claims the hospital called back to confirm Andrewjeski lived at Prestige Living, but was told by another employee, a nurse on duty at the center, that he was not a resident there.
A hospital nurse also called Prestige Living, but no one answered the phone. That nurse then spoke to a family member by phone who said it was OK to send Andrewjeski back to the center in a taxi, and that he had a key to his room.
A taxi was ordered and the taxi driver dropped Andrewjeski off at the main entrance of the Post-Acute and Rehabilitation Center instead of the adjacent building to the north where he resided.
The nurse inside the Rehabilitation Center was the same nurse who told the hospital he was not a resident there.
When Andrewjeski told the nurse he lived there and he needed his walker that was by the door, the nurse said their records did not show him living there.
When he continued to insist that he lived there on the third floor, the nurse said "we don't take care of you" and "you'll just have to go to your room and figure it out."
The lawsuit says Andrewjeski was carrying his veteran's ID card at the time as well as his driver's license showing his address at the adjacent building on Okanogan Ave., his room key that showed his room number and his ER discharge papers.
The suit says the nurse failed to ask for his identification or verify his name, address or any building he may have lived in at Prestige Living Center.
The nurse eventually walked Andrewjeski to the elevator and left him to get to the third floor on his own.
A police investigation revealed a resident on the third floor of the rehabilitation center reported a man had knocked on his door saying he'd been dropped off from the hospital, was lost and needed help getting to his apartment.
The lawsuit says Andrewjeski subsequently exited the building by a side door that locked behind him.
The outside temperature was 28 degrees with snow on the ground, and he was dressed only in thin pants, a button-down shirt, a light windbreaker and tennis shoes.
The suit says Andrewjeski apparently did not know where he was because he walked away from the building he lived in. He walked 400 feet into the parking area behind the rehabilitation center and finally collapsed in the snow.
According to the lawsuit, Andrewjeski died in the snow that night.
Six more inches of snow fell and a snow plow driver discovered his body at about 4:30am after plowing it 120 feet before realizing he was plowing a body that had been covered in snow.
An autopsy revealed deep scalp lacerations and fractured ribs from being struck by the snowplow. The autopsy also confirmed Andrewjeski died before being struck by the snowplow from hypothermia, or freezing to death.
The lawsuit claims negligence, medical malpractice and neglect, abuse and abandonment on the part of Prestige Living Center and its employees.
The suit seeks past and future damages to be proven at trial as well as attorney’s fees and other costs.
It says Andrewjeski's son Thomas Andrewjeski is entitled economic and non-economic damages as a result of his father's death.
Thomas Andrewjeski is the court appointed Personal Representative of the estate of Edmund Andrewjeski.