Firefighter Dies After Ice Bucket Challenge Accident
A Kentucky firefighter has died, weeks after participating in an ALS Ice Bucket Challenge that went horribly wrong.
Electricity from a power line shocked four firefighters on a ladder as they sprayed water on a group of college students below who were trying to pull off the charity stunt.
Crews from the Fire and Rescue Department in Campbellsville were helping the Campbellsville University band with their video “Challenge” August 21.
Capt. Tony Grider died Saturday from burn-related injuries, according to dispatcher Mark Coker with the Campbellsville-Tyler 911 Center. The 41-year-old’s body was driven, accompanied by an official escort, to his hometown of Columbia, Kentucky, and transferred to Grissom-Martin Funeral Home. There are no details yet about his funeral, Coker said.
The fire department posted a message on Facebook which included a “thank you” from Grider’s family to the nurses and doctors who tried to save his life, and the firefighters who spent time at the hospital hoping that he would recover.
Grider leaves behind a wife and children. They all lived in the same home with his parents in Columbia.
Firefighter Simon Alex Quinn, also injured in the Ice Bucket Challenge, was released from the hospital Tuesday, according to Coker.
During the ALS stunt, Grider and Quinn were inside a bucket on a ladder above the students. When they finished dumping water, the students left and the firefighters began moving the ladder, authorities told CNN. The bucket came close to power lines and shocked the men, officials said.
Two firefighters who were on the ground — Capt. Steve Marrs, 37, and Alex Johnson, 28 — were shocked when they tried to lower the bucket and an electric current traveled down the extended ladder, Campbellsville Police Chief Tim Hazlette said at the time.
Marrs and Johnson were taken to the hospital and later released, he said.
An investigation is ongoing. Hazlette told CNN in August that the ladder did not actually touch the power lines.
The power company told investigators that if one gets within a distance of three to four feet from a power line, the energy that surrounds the voltage wire can arc and electrocute other objects, Hazlette told CNN. That’s what authorities believe happened in this case.