Local man's death seen as warning call for health treatment
December 14, 2010
LISBON - On store counters around North Country, there are collection jars with a photo of a bearded-man, probably in his mid-30s, looking way too happy to be dead, but he is. Dead with diabetes, he never knew he had. Now his young widow tries to pick up the pieces of her shattered life.
After a week of flu-like symptom and badgering by his family to go see a doctor, Christopher Hoyt, of Lisbon, died of diabetic shock. "It was absolutely preventable," said Amy Delventhal, Hoyt's adopted mother. He had health insurance, she added, and could have easily gone to a doctor "it wouldn't have cost him a penny."
Hoyt, who was a plumber at J.C. Plumbing and Heating, in Franconia, leaves his wife, Tonya, and their two children age 12 and 1. He and his wife lived with and cared for her parents, who are both terminally ill. Tonya doesn't work outside of the home. A fund has been established to help with the burial costs and to benefit the family at Woodsville Guaranty Savings Bank. Checks should be payable to FBO (for the benefit of) Christopher Hoyt and dropped off at any Woodsville Bank location.
Delventhal came to know Hoyt through her son and eventually adopted him. She described him as "happy and helpful" especially to younger people in his life – his younger siblings, niece and nephew. But, she remains troubled that a man, who did so much for her and for others, wouldn't do anything for himself – especially something as simple as getting medical help.
"He resisted everyone," Delventhal said, who told him that he should "get it checked out."
She noted that he had lost about 20 lbs, was urinating frequently and was less reasonable than usual. All are symptoms for diabetes, which is condition where the body is unable to regulate the glucose, a sugar, in the blood. Finally, she said, "his wife put her foot down and called an ambulance." But it was too late; the disease had progressed too far.
Since Hoyt's death, Delventhal has been stopping young men on the street and instructing them to do two things – "get burial insurance and get a regular physical." They think, she said, "I'm insane," but young men she added, "Think they're invincible."