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Wife of man who died after placing lit firework on his head recalls what happened in the moments before

Wife of man who died after placing lit firework on his head recalls what happened in the moments before

Allen Ray McGrew tragically lost his life on Independence Day

The wife of a man who died after placing a lit firework on top of his head says she thought her husband was 'showboating' before realising he'd made a deadly mistake.

Allen Ray McGrew, 41, was celebrating 4 July with his family, and was also toasting his son Hunter's engagement.

Allen's wife, Paige McGrew, told The Post and Courier: "Allen loved this holiday. He was a patriot, he was proud of his son and he was excited to have a new daughter-in-law. He was living his best life last night."

She added that Allen 'didn't drink regularly', and the party was to be his last blow-out before staying off the booze for a while.

Allen McGrew passed away at the age of 41 (Facebook/ Allen McGrew)
Allen McGrew passed away at the age of 41 (Facebook/ Allen McGrew)

Around 10.30pm, Paige noticed her husband - who was wearing a stars and stripes Uncle Sam outfit for the occasion - was 'holding this firework over his top hat'.

She thought her husband was 'just showboating before he set it on the ground' but then realized 'he had already lit it' and despite her warnings, the firework erupted.

Following that, Allen then collapsed, according to Dorchester County Sheriff's department, before he was pronounced dead at the scene at 11.10pm.

The incident took place on Cottonwood Drive in Summersville (KTLA 5)
The incident took place on Cottonwood Drive in Summersville (KTLA 5)

Coroners say his cause of death is the result of 'massive head injuries' which would've killed him immediately.

Paige said of her husband: "He was a genuine, good person and he loved life. He worked hard and he played hard."

The risks associated with fireworks is a worrying one, with Cal Fire's Santa Clara Unit, Chelsea Burkett, recently warning residents not to set off fireworks themselves because of the danger they pose - such as starting fires.

She told NBC Bay Area: "It happens every year. We see it often and we strongly encourage residents to let the professionals do the show."

Meanwhile, Medical director of the Regional Burn Center at Valley Medical Center, Dr Cliff Sheckter, warned illegal fireworks can be even more dangerous.

He said: "These are mortars, small pieces of dynamite. These can and will blow off your fingers and your hands. We see every year.

"Unfortunately, these types of injuries are not reparable in most circumstances and that obviously is life-altering."

UNILAD has contacted the Dorchester County Sheriff's Office and Dorchester County Coroner's Office for comment.

If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence, contact The Compassionate Friends on (877) 969-0010.

Featured Image Credit: Paige McGrew / KTLA 5

Topics: US News