Man found dead at Redlands elementary school yet to be identified

By in Press Enterprise on July 11, 2017

By Kristina Hernandez

Authorities have yet to positively identify a man found dead Saturday night on the campus of Smiley Elementary.

But a neighbor who lives next door to a community garden near where the man was found said he would visit his plot inside the site two or three times a day in his pickup truck.

“He was a sweet man, probably one of the sweetest gardeners in our ‘Smiley Garden,’” Dianna Lawson said. “He is going to be dearly missed.”

Authorities were called to the elementary school at 1210 W. Cypress Avenue around 5:30 p.m. The man was a local resident who was in his early 70s and authorities suspect no foul play was involved.

Lawson said the man would commonly park his car on the street next to the garden and that he had recently been sick.

The man would always ring a bell he installed in the garden to let neighbors know he was around, according to Lawson. She added that had the most “bountiful” plot of all.

She said she was unaware of any plans to pay respects to the man at the site.

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