Texas Rangers fan dies, fell reaching for ball

July 8, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
There has been a tragedy at a Texas Rangers game in Arlington on Thursday.

                  |   Watch Video Above for Extended Coverage   |

A man is dead after trying to catch a ball and falling from the stands onto the concrete. The man has been identified as 39-year-old Shannon Stone, a firefighter from Brownwood, Texas.

A man standing next to the victim says it all happened so fast.

"The gentleman reached out to get it and lost his balance and went over the rail," said witness Ronnie Hargis. I reached out to grab him, but he went straight down, head first."

The incident happened in the second inning. Oakland Athletics player Connor Jackson hit a foul ball that bounced back onto the field. Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton tossed it into the stands.

Stone, with his son, reached for the ball and went over the railing headfirst, falling 20 feet. Emergency crews rushed to help him.

Oakland pitcher Brad Ziegler was in the bullpen and overheard Stone pleading with workers to check on his son who was all by himself.

"He had his arms swinging. He talked and was conscious," Ziegler said. "We assumed he was OK. But when you find out he's not, it's just tough."

The man was taken to the hospital, but died less than an hour later.

"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. "We're very heavy-hearted about this, and our thoughts and prayers go out to the family."

The Associated Press contributed to this story

Load Comments