A death at Sierra Pacific on Saturday morning is being investigated. A 911 caller told dispatchers that the 38 year-old-man fell approximately 20 feet. We have later learned that the man was 41 years old, not 38, as the caller thought.

The call was received just after 7 am Saturday, Aberdeen medic units responded to a fall victim call with CPR in progress at 301 Hagara Street in Junction City.

Community Relations Manager Lisa Perry passed along the company staff’s deepest condolences, adding, “we were devastated that we lost a friend and a colleague.”

Perry said the company couldn’t release much information on the situation due to the ongoing investigation, “There will be both internal and L&I investigations.” The company is investigating as well as the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries.

Chief Criminal Deputy Steve Shumate with the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office said that the victim has been identified as Andrew M. Ward, a 41-year-old man from Elma.  Ward had been working with other employees at the mill and fell from an elevated platform.  The injuries sustained from the fall resulted in his death.

The Sheriff’s Office notified the next of kin as well as the coroner’s office.  Washington State Department of Labor and Industries was notified and arrived on scene shortly after notification.  They will be completing their own investigation.

The fall and subsequent death appear to be a very tragic workplace accident.  Our sincere condolences to the Ward family.

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