Elderly Nellie Holland falls to death at assisted living center - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Elderly woman falls from 2nd floor window, dies at assisted living center

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An investigation is underway in Gaston County after an elderly woman fell to her death at an assisted living center.

According to investigators, an 88-year-old woman, Nellie Holland, fell to her death at Morningside of Gastonia late Sunday night.

Morningside of Gastonia is an assisted living and Alzheimer's care facility along Union Road in Gastonia.  Investigators say the incident was reported at 10:23 p.m. Sunday.

Holland had recently developed Alzheimer's and her former neighbor told WBTV she had just moved into Morningside within the last couple of weeks.

Police say Holland fell from a second story window and died.

Morningside's director wouldn't go into detail about how it happened. He just said the community is devastated, and an investigation is ongoing.

"Ms. Holland was a very sweet lady. You can't meet many people as loving and caring as she was," former neighbor Ashleigh Stone said.

"I used to go over there and play with her kittens," the teenager recalled. "She used to give me porcelain dolls I collected when I was younger."

Stone says Holland's Alzheimer's had progressed quickly.

"She used to come out of the yard and walk across the street all the way to the train tracks, and it scared me."

Now, after learning her fears came true, Ashleigh wonders if anyone could have prevented the accident.

"They could've kept a better eye on her." she told WBTV.

She says there were several warning signs that Ms. Holland needed extra attention.

"Last week my grandma told me that she had gotten out of her fence and walked around the block," Stone said. "And the cops had to bring her back because she didn't know where she was."

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