San Diego Medical Examiner: Anne Gillin’s Death Caused By Accidental Drowning

by on June 17, 2015 · 2 comments

in Life Events, Ocean Beach

Anne Gillin

Edited photo originally taken by Joe Ewing.

The San Diego County Medical Examiner has determined that Anne Gillin – a well-known transient person who frequented Ocean Beach and Shelter Island – died by accidental drowning.

The reported concluded:

Based on the autopsy findings and the circumstances surrounding the death, as currently understood, the cause of death is drowning, and the manner of death is accident.

There was no evidence of foul play. Investigator Sandra Joseph also found that Gillin suffered from diabetes.

Gillin, 63, was reportedly last seen by a friend on the wading beach at Shelter Island on either April 27 or 28.  The friend, Mary Lawson, was reported to have known Anne as “Sarah” and – from a portion of the County Office of the Medical Examiner’s Office:

… had encountered her on the wading beach of Shelter Island. Mary said the decedent frequently slept overnight on the same beach. She last saw the decedent on the beach on Monday or Tuesday (4/27 or 4/28) speaking with a jogger. Later she saw the decedent lying on the beach and thought she was possibly sleeping. She was between the fire rings on the beach and was above the waterline. On Thursday, 4/30/2015, Mary Lawson saw the decedent’s belongings (keys purse, wallet, make up and shoes) strewn on the wading beach.

She collected the property, opened the wallet and saw a mailing address used by the decedent at American Mail post office. When she could not locate the decedent, she took the belongings to American Mail post office. Detectives impounded the personal property and found identification belonging to Anne Gillin.

Sgt. Womack found syringes and insulin vial in the decedent’s purse. He took it to Walgreen pharmacy (where it was dispensed) and learned the insulin was full and apparently unused. He also found a storage key in her purse from SD Storage, 4800 Pacific Highway, San Diego. He went to the unit and learned the decedent did maintain a unit there and the contents appeared intact.

The analysis provided by the Coast Guard corroborated this location as a possible point of entry into the water. Sgt. Womack had no concerns of foul play after this extensive investigation.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Dan Shay June 17, 2015 at 12:35 pm

She seemed to have a kind heart. My friends and I sort of had a eulogy for her the other night. We all had a positive memory or two of her in OB. One person remembered her breaking up a fight at Bermuda Beach. I personally thought of the time I watched a sunset with her – and she gave off a calm peaceful quiet vibe. I am glad to learn she did not meet a violent end.


Robert Burns June 18, 2015 at 12:35 pm

I see that she was a serious diabetic. I had a client who was a writer who drowned in his swimming pool reportedly by accident caused by a diabetic attack. It’s relieving to know that she apparently wasn’t victimized by someone else.


Leave a Comment

Older Article:

Newer Article: