Elk hunter killed when tree snaps and falls on tent
Skylar Stock, of Queen Creek, Ariz., was on an elk hunting trip with a friend when the tragic accident occurred. The area -- about 20 miles east of Camp Verde, Ariz. -- was being buffeted with winds above 60 mph when the tree broke off about 20 feet above the ground and fell on the tent, killing Stock.
Stock's hunting companion was uninjured and called 911 after cutting his way out of the tent.
Gerry Blair, a Coconino County Sheriff's Office spokesman, told the Arizona Republic that a weather station closest to the site reported winds of 66 mph at the time of the accident. He also said that the tree had an obvious ant infestation where it had broken.
The 27-year-old Stock was a Tempe, Ariz., firefighter and is survived by his wife and three children all under 5.
"He's just one of those kids who endeared himself to you," Mike Reichling, a Tempe fire department spokesman, said of Stock. "He was just eager and willing to do anything to get the job done."
Reichling said the department will be offering support to Stock's family now and in the coming years.
"He left behind a lot of responsibility with those three kids. We're a family and we're going to treat them as family and we're just going to take care of them," he said.
-- Kelly Burgess
Photo: Skylar Stock, 27, was killed during a hunting trip Monday, when a tree fell on his tent and crushed him during a heavy storm. Credit: Tempe Fire Department