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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2008

Coldwater native dies while cutting a tree on his Jay County farm

By Margie Wuebker
A 44-year-old Jay County, Ind., man was killed Monday afternoon when he was struck by a falling tree at his farm.
Steven A. Braun, 6416 E. 400 N., Portland, was pronounced dead at the scene by Jay County Coroner Mark Barnett shortly after the 2 p.m. accident.
Braun was cutting down a tree in a wooded area located down a long lane on his property. The tree fell striking a nearby tree, which also toppled. An unidentified witness ran to a neighboring farm to summon help.
"The second tree knocked him down as it fell," Barnett told The Daily Standard this morning. "It was a tragic accident."
Braun reportedly suffered massive head trauma. He had been carrying a chainsaw, which was found nearby with signs of damage, according to Barnett.
Responding to the scene were deputies from the Jay County Sheriff's Office, personnel from Jay County Emergency Medical Services and Jay County Rescue 19. First responders from the Salamonia Fire Department also rushed to the area along with family members.
"A large number of responders turned out," Barnett said. "Unfortunately, there was nothing anyone could do."
The body was transported to the Jay County Hospital morgue in Portland and later released to Brockman-Boeckman Funeral Home in Fort Recovery.
Braun worked at Elkhart Products in Geneva, Ind. In addition, the Coldwater native was engaged in farming and beekeeping. He was a member of Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Bryant, Ind., and currently served as president of the St. Joseph Men's Sodality there.
He and his wife, the former Patricia Fullenkamp of Fort Recovery, have five daughters, Kimberly, Jennifer, Rachel, Ashley and Kelsey, all of whom reside at home.
Services are 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the church, the Rev. David Hoying officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery.
Contributions can be made to his daughters' education fund.
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