Heat a factor in death of Jones County man

JONES COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - Jones County deputies say a 911 call on Sunday about a missing person ended with a man found dead in the woods.

According to Deputy Coroner Ernest Hollingsworth, the victim who has been identified as William Deavours, 85, suffered heat exhaustion which caused cardiac arrest.

"This is actually the first fatality that we've had here in the county that we can actually relate to possibly heat," said Major Jamie Tedford.

Major Tedford said Deavours was walking, with a friend, through her wooded property. According to the friend, Deavours was going to look over the property and develop a plan so she could take care for it.

"The lady stated that they had approximately got in the woods somewhere around eleven o'clock yesterday morning," said Major Tedford. "These individuals did not have water, they did not have cell phones and they were an elderly couple in their eighties."

Jones County was under a Heat Advisory by the National Weather Service Sunday. According to Meteorologist Megan Hodge, the high temperature broke a record making it all the way up to 100 degrees.

"It was feeling like the triple digits by only eleven o'clock in the morning so obviously at that point the heat can become very dangerous," said Hodge. 

According to Major Tedford, the couple walked several hours and eventually was trying to find their way out and became separated. Deavours friend was able to find a way out and found someone to call 911.  Deputies said the call was made just before 5 p.m. Deavours was located a mile from where their vehicle was parked.

"If you do have to be out in the heat, or you have to go check on something out in the heat make sure you have plenty of liquids, make sure that you have some kind of communication," said Major Tedford.

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