GRASS VALLEY, CA: A tragic accident has left a community in mourning and has led to a Bear River High School student’s death. Justin Butler, 16, was using his Bowflex exercise machine in his home Sunday night when something went wrong. Somehow this star athlete became entangled in the Bowflex machine and was found barely alive by his parents shortly after. There aren’t many details surrounding the bizarre incident, but it appears it was simply an accident. Justin Butler was airlifted to a nearby hospital but died the next day.
Lieutenant Joe Salivar of the Nevada County Sheriff’s Department dispelled rumors that have taken hold in the community,
There is no information or evidence to suggest the death was a result of a football injury. There is no information or evidence to suggest in any way the victim was trying purposefully to hurt himself or end his own life.
Justin Butler was a decorated high school football star and at Friday’s scheduled game, the Bear River players will be wearing number 8 stickers on their helmets in Justin’s memory. Duwaine Ganskie, Bear River Athletic Director, said the team will be dedicating Friday’s game to Butler’s memory. Ganski continued, “The football team is definitely trying to put their collective souls and minds together on how to recognize Justin Butler. It’s a tragedy but first of all, it’s a loss to the family. I think the school and the community are all there to support the family.”
Authorities have concluded the investigation and have ruled the death a “very tragic accident.”