Yet another gender reveal celebration has left someone dead, with the latest fatality occuring before the party even started.
Mechanic and dad-to-be Christopher Pekny, 28, died on Sunday, after a gender-reveal device he was building for an upcoming party exploded in his upstate New York home. His younger brother Michael, 27, was present and suffered a serious knee injury, The Hill reported.
Speaking to the New York Times, their oldest brother Peter called the blast “the freakiest of freak accidents that I could ever imagine.”
State police say 28-year-old Christopher Pekny was killed while trying to build a device to be used at a gender reveal party.https://t.co/SU4YV269Tr
— News12HV (@News12HV) February 22, 2021
An investigation is still underway, but New York state trooper Steven Nevel said the malfunctioning device was only meant to be a prototype for the final prop — at the end of the party, it would emit a blue blast that would reveal that Pekny and his girlfriend were expecting a baby that would be assigned male at birth, a detail Pekny learned last December.
“It wasn’t meant to harm anyone,” Nevel told NBC. “It was just an innocent prop for a gender reveal that went horribly wrong.”
It wasn’t meant to harm anyone. It was just an innocent prop for a gender reveal that went horribly wrong. New York state trooper Steven Nevel
This death is the second this month to be allegedly tied to a gender binary-enforcing stunt. It’s also the latest in an unfortunate trend of people dying in dramatic and expensive ways because of gender reveals gone horribly wrong.
In running these news stories — with Pekny’s tragedy being no exception — many publications have repeatedly pointed out that the creator of gender reveals regrets making them popular and how many people, especially trans communities, see gender reveals in a negative light.
In the wake of this latest gender-reveal-related death, Twitter users are pointing out some dark truths about the baby trend.
the only thing a gender reveal device really announces is that the parents are straight
— Heather Anne Campbell (@heathercampbell) February 23, 2021
just to be clear: gender reveal parties have a higher body count and have done more property damage than antifa ever has https://t.co/C8zTLiI86L
— Dan Ozzi (@danozzi) February 22, 2021
When will science come up with a non-fatal way of informing friends and family your baby will have a penis https://t.co/lnWQic3gbb
— James Felton (@JimMFelton) February 23, 2021
Gender reveal catastrophes have killed vastly more Americans than trans people in bathrooms. https://t.co/AISCGbd04I
— Lindsay Beyerstein (@beyerstein) February 22, 2021
An expecting father was killed while building an explosion device for a gender reveal party in New York.
Two weeks ago, another man in Michigan was killed by a gender reveal canon. In 2020, a gender reveal explosion caused a wildfire and burned thousands of acres in California. pic.twitter.com/t4zBWEzljM
— AJ+ (@ajplus) February 22, 2021
And some are sharing cheeky alternatives.
This is how you do a gender reveal party pic.twitter.com/W4KlmtShC2
— Joshua Zitser (@mrjoshz) February 23, 2021
Tbh I'm all for attending gender reveal parties, but only if the party is being thrown by the individual when they actually wish to reveal their gender.
— James Willems (@JamesWillems) February 23, 2021
Hopefully this will be the last headline we’ll see in 2021 about a gender-reveal casualty.
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost Canada and has been updated.