Entries in Fan (3)


Texas Rangers to Honor Dead Baseball Fan with Statue

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images(ARLINGTON, Texas) -- One of saddest sports stories of the summer occurred at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas last month when a 39-year-old man fell over the railing to his death while trying to catch a baseball tossed by Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton.

What made the accident even more tragic was that Shannon Stone was attending the game with his six-year-old son, Cooper, who watched his father fall 20 feet onto a cement embankment.

This week, the Rangers organization announced it has commissioned the building of a statue to honor Shannon Stone that will be placed outside the stadium.

Entitled "Rangers Fans," the statue will feature the Brownwood, Texas firefighter and his son.

CEO and club president Nolan Ryan -- a Hall of Fame pitcher who played for Texas -- said, "I want for people to remember Shannon and Cooper.  And I want our fans to know that they represent what we are all about, about family entertainment and making memories."

In addition, there have been charities set up to take care of the financial needs of Stone's widow and her son.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Baseball Fan Saved from Near-Death Fall Admits 'Bad Judgment'

Keith Carmickle and his brother Kraig talk with ABC News about his narrow escape from a 20ft. fall while trying to catch a baseball. (ABC News)(NEW YORK) -- The Arizona baseball fan who narrowly escaped a 20-foot plunge while trying to catch a ball says all he recalls of the incident is the frantic screams of those around him and worries that his brother, who reached in to save his life, would be able to hold him. 

"I'm a 250-pound guy," Keith Carmickle, of Kingman, Ariz., said Wednesday on ABC’s Good Morning America. "The look in my brother's face just appeared like, 'Can we hold on to this guy?'"

Carmickle fell after climbing onto a table just 18 inches wide and leaning forward precariously over the railing in front of his right-field bleacher seats to try and catch a ball hit by Milwaukee Brewers star Prince Fielder during Major League Baseball's All-Star Home Run Derby at Chase Field, in Phoenix, on Monday night.

"I was using bad judgment on my part," Carmickle told GMA.

"When it came off the bat it seemed like it was coming directly at us," he said of the moments before the accident occurred. "I stepped up on the ladder and tumbled overboard before I realized what had even happened."

Carmickle fell over the railing headfirst before being grabbed by his brother, Kraig Carmickle, a friend, Aaron Nelson, and other spectators, who managed to save him from the estimated 20-foot fall to the stadium's pool deck.

Carmickle's near-death fall came on the same day as the funeral of Shannon Stone, a 39-year-old firefighter who fell to his death while trying to catch a ball for his young son thrown into the stands by Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton.

"I can only imagine what the Stone family is going through," said Kraig.

Stone's death and Carmickle's close call have raised questions about the safety of major league ballparks, and whether it is the fans who put themselves at risk by reaching for foul balls or the league and the teams who are not adequately protecting the fans.

Carmickle announced on GMA he'd be auctioning off two of the three balls they caught during the game on eBay, in an effort to raise money for Stone's family. They gave a third ball to a young baseball fan.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Texas Rangers Fan Falls to Death Reaching for Ball

Polka Dot Images/Thinkstock(ARLINGTON, Texas) -- A Texas baseball fan fell 20 feet to his death on Thursday after reaching over a barricade to catch a ball tossed to the crowd by Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton.

Arlington Fire Department officials said the man, who witnesses said was conscious after the fall, "went into full arrest" while being transported by ambulance.

The man has been identified as Shannon Stone, who worked with the Brownwood Fire Department. Brownwood Fire Marshal Buddy Preston confirmed that a Brownwood firefighter died at a Texas Rangers baseball game in Arlington.

"We had a very tragic accident tonight and one of our fans lost their life reaching over the rail trying to get a ball," team president Nolan Ryan said somberly after the Rangers' 6-0 victory over Oakland.  "As an organization, and as our team members and our staff, we're very heavy-hearted about this, and our thoughts and prayers go out to the family."

Ryan added that Hamilton is "very distraught over this, as the entire team is."

Thursday's tragedy marks the second deadly fall at a Major League baseball game this season.  A 27-year-old man died in May when he fell 20 feet at a Colorado Rockies game and struck his head on concrete.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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