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Neosho Daily News - Neosho, MO
  • Tornado’s 14th victim

  • Saturday’s tornado has claimed another victim, bringing the total number of deaths in Newton County to 14.


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  • Saturday’s tornado has claimed another victim, bringing the total number of deaths in Newton County to 14.
    Tyler Casey, 21, a firefighter with the Seneca Fire Protection District, died at 1:53 p.m.
    Monday at Joplin’s Freeman West Hospital, where he was admitted after being injured while storm spotting Saturday on Missouri Highway 43 and Iris Road. Casey’s body was taken to Campbell-Biddlecome Funeral Home in Seneca and funeral arrangements are pending.
    Redings Mill Fire Chief Andy Nimmo credited Casey with saving the lives of three people before he was injured.
    “The key is he sacrificed his life so that others would live,” Nimmo said. “He was out warning people so they could get to safety, and then a tornado got him.
    “I have a tremendous amount of pride for what he did. I wish I could be as much of a firefighter as he was. Here he was, just 21 years old and not getting paid anything for what he did. He could have run the other way, but he ran toward it, and gave his life saving others. I hope everyone realizes how much of a hero he was.”
    Casey, who was dispatched to Missouri Highway 43 as a storm-spotter, warned three people of the impending storm: a person changing a flat tire and two people in a nearby home. Those people escaped the storm unharmed.
    Casey has been a volunteer with the Seneca Fire Protection District for three years. He was also employed at Carlin Machine Shop in Seneca. He was one of those interviewed for a Neosho Daily News story published last Friday on rising fuel costs.
    Missouri Gov. Matt Blunt announced all flags in Newton, Barry and Jasper counties will be flown at half-staff in honor of Casey.
    Melanie and I extend our thoughts and prayers to the family and friends of Tyler Casey and all those who have suffered a loss in the weekend storms,” said Blunt. “Missouri firefighters sacrifice every day to protect lives and property and Tyler made the ultimate sacrifice while working to protect the safety of others. I ask Missourians to join me in praying for Tyler and all those who lost a family member or friend.”
    Flags will remain at half-staff until dusk the evening of funeral services honoring Casey.
    Casey leaves behind a two year old child and another on the way.
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