The body of an 88-year-old woman lay in her bed for up to eight months even though caretakers visited the house daily and kept it tidy, authorities said Wednesday.

New Hanover County Sheriff’s deputies were investigating the suspicious death of Blanche Matilda Roth after the remains were found in her Wilmington home Tuesday following a call to 911.

Deputy Charles Smith said Roth likely died in May. Her body was found after the 911 caller, whose identity was being withheld by authorities, reported that an elderly women in the home was unconscious and not breathing.

Smith said caretakers had been coming in and out on a daily basis. He would not specify if the caretakers were family members but said they were not nurses. Failure to report a death is a felony in North Carolina.

Smith said the residence was very well kept. He said police hadn’t received any calls requesting welfare checks of Roth.

Officials are awaiting the results of an autopsy to determine cause of death.

“The neighbors were certainly shocked,” Smith said.

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