Skydiving company employee killed by injuries from walking into propeller

Her boss said that Sarah Rhoads, 24, who died late Monday from injuries from a propeller, was usually very conscientious about safety.
By Frances Burns   |   June 4, 2014 at 11:39 AM

MIDDLETOWN, Ohio, June 4 (UPI) -- The owner of an Ohio skydiving company says his office manager "just made an error" -- a fatal one -- when she walked into a spinning propeller.

Sarah Rhoads, 24, of Miamisburg died Monday night, a day after she was injured. John Hart, owner of Start Skydiving at Middletown Regional Airport, said she was on a usual errand Sunday, asking the pilot of a plane that had just landed if he needed food.

"She just made an error," Hart told the Dayton Daily News. "Usually the propellers are going so fast, you can't see them. She probably walked around the nose and didn't see it."

Hart said Rhoads often chided other people about crossing yellow safety lines.

This year, he plans to call the "Work Stinks Boogie," the annual Labor Day show of 500 skydivers and fireworks, the "Sarah Boogie."

"It doesn't get any worse than this," Hart said. "She was like a daughter. I loved that girl."

On Tuesday, Hart and his other employees honored Rhoads by hanging a banner that says "Never Quit."

The death is being investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration.

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