Share This Page

McCandless boy hurt in zip line accident dies in Children's Hospital

| Tuesday, June 10, 2014, 5:11 p.m.
Rex Smith (from his 7th Grade yearbook at Ingomar Middle School) died on Tuesday June 10, 2014, from injuries suffered in a zip line accident in McCandless.

A 13-year-old McCandless boy died on Tuesday of injuries suffered in an accident during the weekend involving a homemade zip line, a spokesman for the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office said.

Rex Smith, an eighth-grader at Ingomar Middle School who would have turned 14 this month, according to family friend, died at 2:36 p.m. in Children's Hospital in Lawrenceville, where he was taken for treatment of head injuries, the spokesman said.

His death was ruled an accident after consultations with McCandless police and hospital physicians, the spokesman said.

The accident occurred at 3:53 p.m. Sunday off Poor Richards Lane, where Smith and friends were playing on the zip line that was about four feet off the ground, investigators said.

One of the fasteners that secured the line pulled free and hit Smith in the back of the head, investigators said.

He had been on life support since the incident, and North Allegheny School District officials told students on Tuesday morning that Smith had been injured.

Kevin Driscoll, a friend of the family, was at the Smith home while doctors completed an organ harvest surgery and his parents said goodbye.

“It was too bad of a brain injury,” Driscoll said softly. “His organs are going to be donated to help other kids stay alive.”

No funeral arrangements have been made, he said.

“Rex was a good kid, big into Boy Scouts. He played hockey and soccer in the past,” Driscoll said. “He was just a good, all-around kid.”

Megan Harris and Michael Hasch are staff writers for Trib Total Media.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.