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Author: Subject: Tragic Twist at 8/23 ABB concert death

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 02:51 PM
Tragic twist in concert death

By Jessica Pierce and Alex Bauer, staff writers
Daily Messenger
Tue Aug 26, 2008, 10:51 AM EDT
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Hopewell, N.Y. -
When James Hoey left his seat Friday night at the Constellation Brands-Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center just before one of his all-time favorites, the Allman Brothers Band, took the stage, his wife, Kathleen, figured he would be right back.

Instead, he walked into a tragedy that eerily paralleled a fate his brother suffered — also at an Allman Brothers concert.

Mr. Hoey left Kathleen and some friends a little before 9:30 p.m. to find some other friends. After a little while, when Mr. Hoey still hadn’t returned, Kathleen sent one of their friends to go look for him.

“I stayed where I was because he knew exactly where I was,” Kathleen said. “I didn’t want everyone to leave their seats, because then we would have all been running around and wouldn’t have known if he made it back.”

Mr. Hoey never made it back.

Kathleen stayed put through the Allman Brothers Band performance, hoping her husband would return. When he didn’t, she still wasn’t all that alarmed.

“I figured he was with his friends, so I went to the car and planned on meeting him there,” she continued. But Mr. Hoey wasn’t at the car either. Kathleen waited for a few minutes and then decided to approach a nearby ambulance.

“I was beginning to figure that he had a low spell, so I went up to the policeman,” she said, referring to her husband’s blood-sugar level. Mr. Hoey suffered from type 1 diabetes, the most severe form of the disease.

The police officer told Kathleen that it was a woman, not a man, in the back of the ambulance. As she began to walk away, the officer called her back and asked her who she was looking for.

Kathleen began describing her husband and the policeman asked for his name. When she told him, he asked her to step inside a nearby trailer.

“I thought they were going to tell me that his blood sugar had gotten too low and that he was in the hospital,” she said.

Instead, the officer informed Kathleen that her 49-year old husband from Fairport had been injured.

Mr. Hoey apparently tripped as he was walking under the shell near the second entrance on the side closest to the wooden foot bridge. Witnesses told Ontario County Sheriff’s Investigator Jackie Falkey that he “went to bring his hands up to catch his fall,” but was too late. His face struck concrete steps.

Falkey said that it was unclear if his death was a result of the fall, a complication from the disease or a combination of the two. Investigators are awaiting results of an autopsy, including the toxicology report.

Most concertgoers were unaware of the tragedy. The Allman Brothers Band had just taken the stage when Mr. Hoey fell. A few concertgoers who saw what happened, including a doctor, rushed to his aid. While the ambulance was on its way, emergency crews performed CPR on Mr. Hoey, who sustained a facial injury in the fall. He was rushed to Thompson Hospital.

According to Kathleen, Mr. Hoey’s passion was working with children. He received a degree in elementary education from Buffalo State College, trained teachers around the area who work with children and helped design the Holy Cross Early Childhood Center in Rochester.

Kathleen described her husband as a free spirit. She said Mr. Hoey was a quiet man, until it came to sports. He was an avid New York Jets, Mets and Rangers fan.

“He loved being the center of attention at sporting events, especially when the Jets were in Buffalo,” she said.

Kathleen called her husband a “simple man” who loved the mountains and loved walking his dog. Before the birth 19 years ago of their daughter, Carrie Jayne Hoey, they lived in Boulder, Colo., where they would frequently hike in the Rocky Mountains. Carrie will be a sophomore at the Rochester Institute of Technology this fall.

This is not the first tragedy at an Allman Brothers Band concert that has hit the Hoey family.

Years ago, Mr. Hoey’s younger brother, Raymond Hoey of Great Neck, Long Island, also fell while on the stairs at an Allman Brothers concert. He broke his ribs.

Just weeks after the show, Raymond’s kidneys failed. While the kidney failure had nothing to do with Raymond’s fall, the fall still seemed to play a role in his passing. Raymond’s ribs caused so much pain he did not notice the pain in his kidneys. His kidneys were never treated, leading to liver failure. By the time doctors discovered the liver failure, it was too late. Raymond died just two months after his fall at the Long Island concert.

A memorial service for James Hoey will be held at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church at 6020 Pittsford-Palmyra Road in Perinton. His arrangements are being handled by the David A. Doser Funeral Home & Cremation Service.

In addition to his wife, Mr. Hoey is survived by his mother, Ruth Hoey; his daughter, Carrie Hoey; and siblings Jayne, Deborah, Cynthia, Ellen, Christine, Robert and Daniel.

Contact Jessica Pierce at (585) 394-0770, Ext. 250, or at jpierce@messengerpostmedia.com.
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True Peach



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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 02:56 PM
Man, that's some rough news. My thoughts are with the Hoey family.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 02:57 PM
that is JUST so sad........prayers being sent to the Hoey friends and family

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:00 PM
That is an awful story. I guess when I hear about a person (or people) who are anticipating a great evening only to be met with tragedy, it strikes me as even more tragic. My prayers are with the Hoeys.

[Edited on 8/26/2008 by paulzavodnyik]

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:03 PM
Prayers and comfort to the Hoey family.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:08 PM
So so sad...................prayers going out to the Hoey family.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:10 PM
Very sad, prayers and vibes to the family

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:13 PM
Wow, we had no idea any of that was going on and we were on the side of stage mentioned. What a tragic night for that family. Our best wishes go out to the entire family.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:15 PM
Our sincere condolences to the Hoey family. How tragic and my heart goes out to Kathleen and her daughter Carrie, so very sad.

Prayers of strength and love to all....

Karen, Lynn and family.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:17 PM
Terrible story. Prayers to the Hoey family and friends.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:19 PM
I was just talking at work today about how the unexpected can happen, every day we wake up, go to work, have a night out, and then something happens we can't explain. My prayers for this family.
 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:21 PM
;-\ That's sad. My condolences to the family.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:25 PM
I remember a story here in Mass. This guy was at the beach and was going to attend a Great Woods show that weekend. I guess the tide took his feet out from under him and he fell and broke hi neck. It happened around when I joined here. We sent him some live shows. I know he was going to DC to promote the Christopher Reeve foundation. Have not seen him post lately. I will look thru the archives

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:26 PM
From the Boston Globe

Pushing for a miracle
Spinal cord patients will gather to urge lawmakers to pass paralysis act
By Maureen Costello, Globe Correspondent | April 3, 2005

All Chaz Southard was looking for that August day in 2002 was a little respite from the heat. After chatting with a few lifeguards on a crowded Plum Island beach, the experienced surfer walked torso-deep into the Atlantic and plunged hands-first into the cool, salty sea.

A strong undertow lifted his feet, and his head struck a sandbar created by the changing tide. The collision affected his fourth cervical vertebra, bruising his spinal cord. Although he remained conscious, he lost all feeling below his neck and was at the mercy of the current, until several people pulled him to safety.

A few hours later, when Southard was supposed to attend an Allman Brothers concert, his family gathered at a Boston hospital where they learned he might die. If he survived, they were told, he would never walk or live independently. Southard and his family spent the next nine months in hospitals in Boston, Denver, and Atlanta, where they all learned how to live with his injury.

Now 25 and paralyzed from the neck down, the Topsfield resident is helping with the first national rally for a cure, organized for and by paralyzed Americans. On April 12, the Southards will travel to Washington, D.C., to encourage lawmakers to pass the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Act, which would provide $300 million to research paralysis over the next three years.

The Southards also hope the rally will reinvigorate interest in the plight of paralyzed Americans, which many believe has faded since Reeve died in October.

''It was like the air went out of the balloon," said Chaz's father, Chuck.

After Chaz's accident, the Southards' life and home were transformed. Chuck modified their house so that Chaz can maneuver his electric wheelchair on the lower level. Chaz relies upon his father, mother Julie, and 22-year-old brother Corey to shave, feed, clothe, and bathe him each day.

''A spinal cord injury devastates a family," Chuck said. ''It's more emotional for the siblings and for anyone who cares about the person. That's why they call it a catastrophic injury."

Through months of intensive exercise and therapy, Chuck helped Chaz increase strength in his upper arms. Though Chaz cannot use his hands or fingers, he can move his shoulders enough to operate his chair. That enabled Chaz to achieve his primary goal after the accident: to scratch an itch on his face.

''My main goal was to read a book, but then being able to scratch my face became my first goal," said Chaz, who received a degree in environmental science from the University of New Hampshire three months before his accident.

Chaz and his family deal daily with other, less visible aspects of the injury. Chaz experiences sporadic muscle spasms and nerve pain, which is partially relieved through drugs. He cannot control his body temperature. His blood circulation may decrease, and he is at a higher risk for diabetes and obesity. His body needs to be shifted regularly to avoid pressure sores. His blood pressure is checked routinely.

The injury left other scars.

''Certain friends of mine became closer, and some I have not heard from in a while," Chaz said. ''My girlfriend left me."

Once beloved by the children of friends and family, Chaz now sees youngsters shy away from him. He can't tell if they're shy or suspicious of the wheelchair. It is difficult to maneuver his wheelchair through once-favorite romps like Harvard Square, never mind thresholds or the beaches he had hoped to help preserve through the environmental work he prepared for at college.

Voice-activated computer software gives Chaz access to the Web and e-mail. But that, too, has limitations. He must work in total silence, ''otherwise the door shutting or my dog barking or a family member shouting or asking for me will be picked up by the computer," he said.

Chaz cannot be left unattended. His neck becomes strained at movie theaters because he has to sit in the first row. He attended a Phish concert, only to have people kick his chair. He overheard one man complain about a wheelchair in everyone's way.

''It was very discouraging," Chaz said. ''Plus, I couldn't see. So I stepped away from the whole music concert thing."

Now, Chaz concentrates on appreciating the beauty that surrounds him and translating it into poetry and paintings. He reads works of the Dalai Lama. He researches cures and quality-of-life issues for paralyzed people, writing editorials for local publications. He posts much of his work at www.chazsouthard.org/blog. Chaz also corresponds regularly with others with spinal cord injuries, via www.sciwire.com and www.CureParalysisNow.org.

It was through the Internet that Chaz learned of the rally, spearheaded by Betheny Winkler, a 45-year-old quadriplegic from Oklahoma. US Representatives Michael Bilirakis of Florida and Jim Langevin of Rhode Island, who became paralyzed after a gunshot wound, are among those reintroducing the Reeve bill in April.

Written in 2003, the bill would dedicate $300 million over three years at the National Institutes of Health to research paralysis and expand activities at the NIH to improve the quality of life for those living with paralysis.

For many, attending the rally poses challenges. Many participants have a difficult time traveling by car or air, and handicap-accessible hotel rooms are limited. Restricted finances are another issue, Winkler said.

''Disabled people are on limited incomes, anyway," said the former lab technician, who has not worked since tripping nearly five years ago.

She said she would like to see a resident from each state at the rally, so that every legislator can have an opportunity to speak with a constituent. Senator John F. Kerry agreed to speak with the Southards.

''He's keeping Christopher Reeve's spirit alive and well," Kerry said of Chaz. ''Chaz is a living and breathing reminder that one of the best ways to honor life is to cure debilitating diseases and paralysis."

The rally efforts have been endorsed by the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation and Dana Reeve, Christopher's widow, who will speak at the event. Marc Buonoconti, son of NFL Hall of Famer Nick Buonoconti, will also speak. He broke his neck in a high school football game 20 years ago.

Roughly 280,000 Americans suffer from spinal cord injuries, and 78 percent are male, according to statistics from the National Spinal Cord Injury Database. The average age at injury is 38. About half of the injuries are caused by automobile accidents.

While many believe that embryonic stem cell research holds hope for spinal cord injuries and other debilitating conditions, the proposed law steers clear of that divisive issue.

Federal funding is limited to stem cell research on existing stem cell lines. Opponents of expanded stem cell research believe that it would be a gateway for unethical procedures such as human cloning.

While the obstacles to a cure remain high, Chaz Southard and his family say the stakes are too high to give up the fight.

''This will be cured," said Chuck Southard. ''We will be working on this as a family and beyond. We will not be going away.

''We live the reality that only the people with spinal cord injury know, and that reality is unacceptable."

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:26 PM
a terrible tradagy. god bless this family that will miss their loved one
 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:28 PM
http://www.chazsouthard.org/

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:53 PM
so sad

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 03:56 PM
Prayers for his family...a second tragedy at a show this year.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 04:05 PM
Prayers sent to the Hoey family. Incredible 2 brothers at 2 different shows.

 

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  posted on 8/26/2008 at 05:12 PM
We didn't know anything about this until the next day.


Tragic.

 

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  posted on 8/27/2008 at 10:09 AM
Rest in peace Jimmy.
 

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  posted on 8/27/2008 at 10:29 AM
My brother and I were at the show Friday night and were a mere 20 feet away from where the guy fell. We didn't notice anything until security moved us away from the area that we were standing in. We looked over towards the wine concessionaire and saw security and medical personnel performing CPR on Mr. Hoey. Who showed signs of his fall. Most prominently there was a large bruise on his forehead. I would guess the CPR in front of the wine concession lasted for about 10-15 minutes until they moved out of the pavilion and to a nearby ambulance.

It's quite tragic what happened and made even more weird by what happened to his brother a few years ago. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family.

 

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  posted on 8/27/2008 at 10:41 AM
how sad..

 

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  posted on 8/27/2008 at 11:47 AM
How very awful To think my brother and I were enjoying the ABB launch into their set while this was going on a few yards away. My heart feels for the family. You never know.
 

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  posted on 8/27/2008 at 11:56 AM
This is just horrible... so, so sad!

 

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