A CARE home resident who was described as a “wonderful character” died after choking on a large piece of meat, an inquest heard.

Geoffrey Hull was a resident at Gracewell of Salisbury, Shapland Close, Wilton Road, at the time of his death on 29th November last year.

An inquest at Salisbury coroner’s court on Friday, February 22 heard the retired budget manager was having lunch when he started choking.

Care staff carried out “back blows” and abdominal thrusts to clear the 78-year-old’s airway but Mr Hull was said to be unresponsive. CPR was carried out and an ambulance was called but he subsequently died at Salisbury District Hospital.

Records from the ambulance service said a large piece of meat had been removed from Mr Hull’s airway.

The inquest heard Mr Hull, who also suffered from Parkinson’s disease and Lewy body dementia, a progressive form of the condition, had been able to eat independently but there was assistance on hand at meal times.

The cause of death was hypoxic brain injury, cardio respiratory arrest due to an obstruction of the airway, Lewy Body dementia and Parkinson’s disease.

Coroner Ian Singleton, gave a conclusion of accidental death. He said: “On November 29 at around 1.15pm Geoffrey Hull, a resident of Gracewells of Salisbury care home, was in the dining room having lunch when he began to choke. Despite assistance from the care home staff and paramedics Geoff suffered hypoxic brain injury as a result of cardio respiratory arrest due to airway obstruction against the background of Lewy body dementia and Parkinson’s disease, and subsequently died at Salisbury District Hospital.”

Mr Ridley said Mr Hull’s care plan “recognised there was a risk of choking on food”, which he said was “sadly a feature of Parkinson’s disease”, but there had been no prior incidents.

He said that it is believed Geoff’s heart had stopped for about 12 minutes and that although he was taken to hospital there was “nothing that could be done”.

A spokesman for Gracewell said: “Geoffrey was a much loved member of our community and is greatly missed by all of us at Gracewell. He was truly a wonderful character and we are proud that he made his home with us.”

“Our thoughts continue to be with his family at this difficult time.”