August 11, 2020 – Dr. Kent Harshbarger – Montgomery County Coroner

Announcements

CNO received a note from the Chuck Dickerson Memorial Scholarship that they just awarded a student $1,000. Chuck was a 41-year member of the Centerville Noon Optimist Club. Anyone interested in donating to the scholarship may use Fund # 1485 at the DaytonFoundation.org.

Dr. Kent E. Harshbarger, Montgomery County Coroner

Greg Griffin introduced Dr. Kent E. Harshbarger, M.D., J.D, B.B.A, the Montgomery County Coroner and he also works for the Miami Valley Regional Crime Laboratory. He became coroner in 2011 and became an employee of the coroner’s office in 2002.

You can view his slide deck here.

Overview of the Coroner’s Office

The job of a coroner is to determine the cause and manner of deaths. They cooperate with law enforcement personnel. It is the job of law enforcement to determine who did it. Not every death is handled or reported to the coroner’s office.

The law states, “Anyone Who Obtains Knowledge thereof Arising from His Duties, Shall Immediately Notify the Office of the Coroner.”

The coroner is contacted for deaths that are:

  • Homicides/Suicides
  • Accidents
  • Suspicious or Unusual
  • Involve someone who appeared in good health
  • Children under the age of two

Death Investigation goals are:

  • Reduction in crime
  • Impartial justice, civil lawsuits, and family rights protection
  • Vehicle, home, and work accident reduction
  • Understand and reduce unexpected adult and infant deaths
  • Track public health, terrorism, and infectious diseases

2019 Investigations Summary:

  • Montgomery County has the busiest Coroner’s office in Ohio, covering 40 Ohio counties
  • 6289 Deaths reported
  • 2657 Accepted cases
  • 2144 Accepted for autopsy
  • 191 External exams
  • 322 Records review

2019 Types of death breakdown:

  • 4335 Natural
  • 1439 Accident
  • 290 Suicides
  • 124 Homicides
  • ??? Undetermined (typically it is 3%)

States in the U.S. use different systems for handling deaths. Coroners are elected while medical examiners are appointed. Ohio uses the coroner system. Ohio is the only coroner-based state to require its coroners to have a medical degree. The medical examiner system is much more expensive as the medical examiner is generally a forensic pathologist.

Harshbarger defined evidence as, “Something legally obtained as a means of ascertaining the truth of any alleged matter of fact under investigation before the court.” Evidence establishes a crime has been committed and is used to link things together. Sometimes evidence can be lost during the organ and tissue donation process.

Evidence Procurement Issues

  • Loss of Trace Evidence (trace evidence is anything found in small quantities)
  • Medical device removal
  • Unknown medical diagnosis
    • Wrong diagnosis
    • Unsuspected cardiac findings
  • Unusual findings
    • Airway insertion errors
    • Bullet pathway
  • Chain of custody
  • Potential for missing patterns of injury
    • Child abuse
    • Wounds altered
    • Internal findings not documented
  • Blood sample problems
  • Criminal prosecution – cause and manner of death

Organ and Tissue Donation

Harshbarger discussed when organs and tissues can be donated.

  • Organ donation:
    • After brain death, medical staff and donation staff do not overlap
    • The removal of life support with immediate cardiac decline
  • Tissue donation:
    • After death, usually up to 24 hours with refrigeration
    • Pre or Post autopsy

There is no conflict of interest between medical personal and the organ and tissue donation retrieval team. Only after the coroner’s office declares death is the retrieval team notified of a potential donor. It is at this point the family members are contacted about the donation.

The opioid epidemic issue is increasing again in our area. Per capita, Dayton has 4 times the rate of opioid overdoses compared with Columbus This has increased the pool of eligible donors.

Who can Attend Zoom Meetings?

Any member of any type of Centerville Noon Optimist can attend Zoom meetings. CNO 2.0, St Leonard’s and CNO full members or CNO monthly members can ALL attend.

Guests are also welcome. Please invite guests and introduce them if you like. Just share the Zoom link with them for that week.

Membership Anniversaries

MemberMonthDayJoined# Years
Maha KashaniAugust158/15/200614
Kristen PassidomoAugust168/16/20173

Birthdays

MemberBirthday
Paul StullAugust 11
Larry LyndeAugust 12
Fred PolizziAugust 13
Julie ShislerAugust 13
Bill DuffyAugust 13
Vince ReidyAugust 14
Martin HuffstutlerAugust 14
Rhonda MeekerAugust 15
Greg WasmundAugust 15
Gail AikenAugust 17

Happy Bucks

MemberReason
Carolyn TaylorMother had her 101st birthday on 8/10/2020.
Sue JesseeGrandson was able to receive his boy scout merit badges over Zoom.

CNO Donations 2013 through July 2020

Click this link to see a summary of the donations our club has made.

Over 50 years, we have donated close to $2,000,000 to our youth community. In the past 6 years, we have donated nearly $753,000.

Sergeants at Arms

No Sergeants this week.

Welcome Guests!

No Guests this week.

New Member Readings and Inductions

No Readings or Inductions this week.

Zoom Meeting This Week

We had another meeting using Zoom. We will continue our weekly meetings via computer, cell phone or tablet for at least the next several weeks. Please join us and keep inviting guests.

Who can Attend Zoom Meetings?

Any member of any type of Centerville Noon Optimist can attend Zoom meetings. CNO 2.0, St Leonard’s and CNO full members or CNO monthly members can ALL attend.

Guests are also welcome. Please invite guests and introduce them if you like. Just share the Zoom link with them for that week.

COVID-19 UPDATE

In keeping with social distancing requirements – our CNO Meetings have transitioned temporarily to a online format using ZOOM.

Club Member Joe Madden was inspired to rewrite The Optimist Creed – so we give you now – The Corona Creed -with apologies to Christian D. Larson, Author of The Optimist Creed.