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Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

Celina teen killed at construction site

By Shelley Grieshop
OSGOOD - A Celina High School junior was killed at a construction site in Osgood on Monday morning when his father backed over him with a Bobcat front loader.
Damon Springer, 16, of Celina, was pronounced dead at the scene shortly after the accident at 10:53 a.m. along West Main Street. He reportedly was helping his father, James Springer, 48, who owns and operates Springer Sons Tree Service of Celina.
The Springers were subcontracted to trim trees in a construction zone along state Route 705.
Darke County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Mark E. Whittaker said Osgood Rescue and Fire responded to the scene from a 911 call but there was little they could do; the boy was already deceased.
Whittaker said investigators have not determined if the Bobcat being used had a back-up safety alarm and/or if the alarm was operational at the time. Officials with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) were called to the scene to help in the investigation.
The teenager's death marks the fourth traffic fatality in Darke County this year.
Damon Springer began attending Celina High School last year and was a member of the wrestling team. Teachers and staff members said he had a "great personality and wonderful sense of humor."
"We are all saddened by the news. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Springer family," high school principal Jason Luebke said.
The teen would have joined classmates Thursday to register for the new school year, he added.
Luebke said tragedies like this are difficult to accept.
"It's a hard time for any school but our students and staff will come together and support each other," he said.
Damon will be missed, he added.
Funeral arrangements were incomplete this morning at Cisco Funeral Home, Celina.
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