20 Mar '13, 3am
Elderly man kills wife & commits suicide in US hospice unit, after deciding he could not live without her
ALLENTOWN, Pennsylvania (AP) - An elderly man who shot and killed his 83-year-old wife in an eastern Pennsylvania hospice unit on Tuesday and then committed suicide, had apparently decided he could not live without her, authorities said. Staff members heard gunshots on the fourth floor of Lehigh Valley Hospital in Allentown shortly after 1 pm local time. When they entered the room where the shots were fired, they found Mrs Mildred Osman dead in her bed, along with the body of 86-year-old Elwood Osman, said Lehigh County District Attorney Jim Martin. The shooting "preliminarily appears to be a murder-suicide," Mr Martin said. The Lehigh County coroner's office said autopsies on both are scheduled for Wednesday. Mr James Geiger, senior vice-president of the hospital, was asked at a news conference if Mr Osman's shooting death appeared to be a "mercy killing."