Oak Lawn police are now calling the death of a 51-year-old man found injured on his front porch after a night of drinking “a tragic accident,” not the result of foul play as relatives and friends had suspected.
Terrence Reichert was dropped off at his home in the 10900 block of South Komensky Avenue by a relative around 1 a.m. on Jan. 30.
Authorities said about five hours later Reichert’s girlfriend found him slumped over near his front door unable to speak, his face injured; he appeared to have been outside all night.
Reichert was taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center where he died Monday morning. The Cook County medical examiner’s office conducted an autopsy today and determined that Reichert died of a closed head injury due to a fall, and that hypothermia and intoxication contributed.
His neighbor Sandy Bock said the loss was a shock. “He was always such a happy-go-lucky guy,” she said.
Reichert is at least the eighth person to die of cold-related causes in Cook County since the beginning of the winter season.