BRISTOL — The family of a 43-year-old Goshen man killed at his workplace in Bristol on Friday is mourning his death and asking questions about the circumstances.
Shawn Gray was killed at Bravo Trailers when a piece of machinery being moved by a forklift fell on him, according to his wife, Angela Gray.
“He’d only been working there for less than three months and he was supposed to be getting off work soon. He only went in Friday for extra money,” Gray said.
Elkhart County Sheriff’s Department and medics from Bristol Fire & Rescue responded to the call.
Bravo Trailers called Gray and informed her of the accident, stating he was being treated and would be sent to Elkhart General Hospital.
“I waited there, but he wasn’t showing up,” she said.
She waited for over an hour before someone told her a hospital social worker would be there to speak with her.
“I’ve seen a lot of death. When they told me someone was coming to talk to me, I knew what that meant,” Gray, a nurse at Goshen Hospital, said. “I just didn’t want to believe that something like that could happen.”
According to Elkhart County Coroner James Elliott, the preliminary cause of death was blunt injury trauma.
Gray called their blended family a modern-day Brady Bunch, including his daughters Brooklyn, 12, Madison, 16, and Clarissa, 18, and her son Christian, 16, and daughters Breana, 19, and Jamye, 23.
“We’re devastated,” Gray said. “He touched so many people’s lives. I heard from so many people that I’d never even met. People have been dropping by and bringing food and things. From his old work at Lippert, I still have people contacting me. He knew a lot of people.”
Their children spent the sunny Tuesday afternoon at the beach, marking Brooklyn’s birthday.
Gray has been spending time cleaning the house, keeping busy when possible.
“I went to his work to pick up his stuff,” she said. “They didn’t tell me anything that I didn’t already know.”
The autopsy report won’t be available for nearly two months, but Gray said a settlement agreement for funeral and other expenses should be offered in the next few days. She’s contacted a lawyer just in case.
“I want my kids to be taken care of,” she said. “They’re worried about me, and about us being able to pay the bills.”
The funeral is set for Friday.
“We got to see him the other day and it was pretty hard on them.” Gray said. “That was their dad, you know?”
Officials at Bravo Trailers were unavailable for comment.
“I just want answers for my family, and I feel like they owe me that. How could something like this happen?”