• Dennis McCaslin

Van Buren long term health care facility, administrators faces lawsuit




A thirty-nine page lawsuit filed in Crawford County Circuit Count on Thursday alleges that a Van Buren nursing facility, six specific individuals and five John Doe defendants were negligent in the April, 2019 death of a local woman.


Carol Kelly filed the lawsuit through her Little Rock attorney on Thursday naming Van Buren Health and Rehabilitation Center (Wonder Boy Properties LLC), Robert A. Rye, Robert V. Rye, Paul Stein, James Stein, Leann Ogden and Stacey Drewry as defendants in the suit claiming negligence in the death of 72-year-old Linda Kay Kelly on April 6, 2019.


According to the lawsuit, the former Whirlpool employee, teacher and real estate agent died as the result of substandard care at the facility. Both Stein's and Rye's were named in the suit in their capacity as owners of the facility. Ogden was the Administrator of Wonder Boy Properties and Drewry was the Director of Nursing at the time of the death.

We had featured Drewry in a story last week after she was arrested for Aggravated Assault on a Family or Household Member in Fort Smith and booked into the Sebastian County Detention Center.


She is also on a one-year probation and was fined $500 by the Arkansas Board of Nursing for unprofessional conduct and/or related drug use. She is currently out on $2500 bond for the assault charge.


In May of last year, Ogdon was promoted from being the administrator at Van Buren Health and Rehabilitation to her position with Wonder Boys Properties as the company Administrator.


According to the lawsuit, Kelly was a patient at the facility from November 23, 2018 until her death. The suit cites various state and federal violations that contributed to the death of Kelly and specifically cited improper staffing and training as well as the "below standard" marks of the facility which held a 2 of 5 rating from the proper certifying organizations.


You can read the entire text of the lawsuit by clicking HERE.


Today in Fort Smith just received notification of the lawsuit and will be doing follow up stories on the situation as warranted.






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