WATERLOO | A Waterloo man who was found unconscious in the early morning hours of May 26 has died.

Waterloo police confirmed Dennis Dwaine Washburn passed away at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics on Wednesday night. He was 69.

His daughter, April Washburn, said doctors removed a ventilator Monday, and Dennis Washburn was breathing on his own. She said his condition deteriorated Wednesday, and they were told there was no chance he would recover.

Relatives said Dennis Washburn had head injuries and a broken neck.

An autopsy to determine the cause of his fatal injuries is slated for Friday, said Lt. Michael McNamee with the Waterloo Police Department.

A passerby found Washburn unconscious in the grass near the former Longfellow Elementary School around 12:30 a.m. May 26. He was taken to the hospital and never regained consciousness, according to relatives.

Authorities and family members suspect he was beaten and robbed. Police have been investigating the incident but have found little evidence, McNamee said.

April Washburn said relatives are at peace because her father is no longer suffering, but they still want justice.

“It sucks because we don’t know who did this, and I don’t know if we ever will know,” April Washburn said.

“He passed away at the hands of somebody else. Who’s to say he (the assailant) won’t do this to somebody else,” she said.

A father of five, Dennis Washburn was a Waterloo native. He served in the U.S. Navy and worked at John Deere. He later worked briefly as a nurse aide.

“When we were younger he was really into cars, just working on any kind of car,” April Washburn said.

More recently, Dennis Washburn didn’t drive and got around with the assistance of a walker.

Relatives said Dennis Washburn was last seen at the Jet Lounge on West Parker Street the night of May 25. They aren’t sure how he arrived, but he left alone around 9 p.m.

He was discovered hours later about half a mile away on Edwards Street. His wallet was found 100 to 200 feet away, April Washburn said. She said a crate of groceries he purchased were still with his walker.

Washburn lived on Leland Avenue, and the Longfellow location would have been on his path home.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Waterloo Police Department at 291-4340 ext. 3 or Cedar Valley Crime Stoppers, (855) 300-8477. Tips also may be sent with TipSoft or by texting the word CEDAR plus the information to CRIMES (274637).

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