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Dad Accidentally Kills Teen Son in Front of His Siblings at Gun Range

The Short of It

A 14-year-old boy was accidentally shot and killed by his father at a Florida gun range.

The Lowdown

A fluke incident has ended in tragedy. Dad Clayton Brumby was firing a gun at a Sarasota gun range over the weekend, when a used shell casing deflected off a wall and landed inside the back of his shirt. When he tried to quickly remove the very hot shell with his right hand—which was holding the gun—the weapon accidentally fired into the ceiling, ricocheted and struck his son, Stephen, who was standing directly behind him, according to Brumby's eldest son, David, who witnessed the incident.

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But the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office's statement differs slightly.

"Brumby used his right hand, which was holding the handgun, in an attempt to remove the casing," the sheriff's office said in a statement. "While doing so, he inadvertently pointed the firearm directly behind him and accidentally fired."

David, 24, and his 12-year-old sister were standing nearby. They were not injured, but they saw the entire thing. And sadly, although he was rushed to an area hospital, their brother could not be saved.

No charges have been filed against Brumby.

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The Upshot

On the GoFundMe memorial page that was created, Stephen is described as the fourth of seven children and "a meteor that couldn't be contained by his family or anyone that knew him. He loved fishing, tennis music, archery, and knife throwing. He had an insatiable appetite to learn and was constantly sharing his wisdom with those around him."

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My heart goes out to this family, who will likely be judged in the wake of this horrible tragedy. Accidents happen. The father made a mistake, and he paid the ultimate price by losing his son. He will have to live with this for the rest of his life—there is no greater punishment. So instead of beating him up, let's all send prayers for peace and strength instead.

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