11-Year-Old Boy Dies in 'Tragic Freak Accident' While Playing with Fireworks: 'A Great Kid'

·3 min read

An 11-year-old boy from Indiana died after he was injured while playing with fireworks over the Fourth of July weekend.

Camrynn Ray McMichael, of Mount Vernon, was "seriously injured" Sunday night during a fireworks incident on N. Canal Street in his hometown, according to an Indiana State Police news release.

The boy succumbed to his injuries while being transported to an Evansville hospital, per the statement. An official cause of death has not been revealed.

The victim's mother, Kyrra McMichael, said in a social media message to the Evansville Courier & Press that her son was protecting his younger sister, Karmynn Louise McMichael, "like a big brother should!"

Speaking with FOX affiliate WXIN, Kyrra called Sunday's incident "a tragic freak accident."

"Fireworks are no joke," she told the outlet, "and when you think it won't be yours, in the blink of an eye it is."

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Posey County 911 Dispatch was alerted to Sunday night's accident just before 9:45 p.m. local time, according to the ISP's news release.

A GoFundMe campaign for Camrynn's family claims the incident occurred when a set of fireworks "malfunctioned."

Camrynn Ray McMichael
Camrynn Ray McMichael


In her message to the Courier & Press, Kyrra said Camrynn was a good kid who dreamed of playing professional sports.

"He was an all-around, American boy," Kyrra told Courier & Press, adding that her son was "trying to get himself a scholarship to go to college and be in the NFL or NBA."

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"He's every parent's dream of a boy," she said, "... And because boys are boys, they play with fireworks [and] he is gone. In the blink of an eye. Literally."

Ruth Fulwider, a family friend who works at Mount Vernon's Brittlebank Pool and interacted with Camrynn and his mother on various occasions, told ABC affiliate WEHT that Camrynn regularly participated in sports.

Rhett Snodgrass, an assistant manager at the pool, told the outlet that the young boy was both athletically gifted and wise.

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"When you talked to him, you wouldn't think he was 10, 11 years old, but that's how old he was," Snodgrass explained. "He had a really, really smart mind to him. And really polite, he had really great manners, and he was just great to be around."

Snodgrass said Camrynn was "one of the better kids at the community center" and "a lot of the younger kids looked up to him."

"He would have applied himself to anything," Snodgrass told WEHT. "He could have done anything he wanted, he was a great kid."

Sunday's incident remains under investigation by the Indiana State Police, Mt. Vernon Police Department and the Posey County Coroner, according to Monday's release.

An autopsy is scheduled to be conducted on Tuesday, Indiana State Police said.