Cold potentially killed elderly Oak Bluffs woman

A woman died in front of her home on Munroe Avenue in Oak Bluffs. — Eunki Seonwoo

A 92-year-old woman was found dead in front of her home on Munroe Avenue in Oak Bluffs over the frigid weekend. 

Massachusetts State Police were notified of the “unattended death” shortly after 2 pm on Saturday. Local emergency responders were also on the scene. 

The Cape and Islands District Attorney’s office confirmed the woman was Marie Allen, a beloved member of the Oak Bluffs community and longtime advocate for the Martha’s Vineyard chapter of the NAACP.

A state police detective unit with the DA’s office led the investigation.

Officials say Allen was seen outside her Munroe Avenue home “on the walkway leading to her front door” earlier in the day.

Massachusetts State Police spokesman David Procopio stated she was “determined to be deceased on the scene,” and evidence indicates she was “outside in the extreme cold for an unknown period of time, possibly overnight.” 

According to Procopio, temperatures on Friday night and into Saturday morning were around -6°F. The gusty winds, which blew up to 30 mph, brought wind chills of -20°F.

The cold weather was a concern for many Islanders as it approached Martha’s Vineyard, and it also impacted Steamship Authority ferries on Sunday. 

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will conduct a post-mortem examination. 

When contacted, Oak Bluffs Police Chief Jonathan Searle said “the [district attorney’s] office is handling the investigation,” and referred The Times to the State Police. 

Russ Eonas, the second Cape and Islands assistant district attorney, declined to give further details in their investigation. The death is not suspicious.