Family of woman who died after cleaning Barnitz Stadium wants answers

The family of a Middletown woman who died while cleaning a high school football stadium Friday night is frustrated and confused about the events surrounding her death.

Charlotte Ferguson Kempf, 35, died early Saturday morning at Atrium Medical Center after an incident about one hour earlier at Barnitz Stadium, according to school district officials.

FIRST REPORT: Woman dies while cleaning Middletown High School’s Barnitz Stadium

Charlotte Ferguson Kempf died in the early morning hours of Aug. 25 after an incident at Middletown High School's Barnitz Stadium. (Provided)

The Warren County Coroner’s Office performed an autopsy, but it may take eight weeks before the toxicology results are released, officials said.

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Meanwhile, her family continues searching for answers, her aunt Glenda King told the Journal-News.

“We don’t know what to believe,” King said.

She said the family originally was told that Ferguson Kempf may have fallen off the bleachers and hit her head. Then the family was told she collapsed and later died at the hospital, according to King. 

She said they are hoping autopsy results answer those questions.

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Ferguson Kempf attended Monroe High School, but never graduated, her family said. She had struggled with a drug addiction in the past, but seemed to be “turning her life around,” her aunt said.

“She was not a bad person,” King said. “She just had some drug issues.”

She has three children, a 17-year-old son and two other sons she put up for adoption, her aunt said.

Her mother, Kay Clevenger, said her daughter “loved life.”

Funeral arrangements are being handled by Herr-Riggs Funeral Home. Friends have established a GoFundMe account to help pay for the funeral.

Ferguson Kempf was working for Crown Services, a temp agency in Monroe, when she collapsed around 12:05 a.m. Saturday after cleaning a locker room used by referees at Barnitz Stadium, said Elizabeth Beadle, a spokeswoman for Middletown City Schools.

In a 911 call obtained by the Journal-News, two men tell a dispatcher that Ferguson Kempf either fell, fainted or collapsed. They said she was unconscious and they didn’t know about any possible medical issues.

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