LAWTON, Okla. -- A horrible accident at a Bar S plant in Southwest Oklahoma has taken the life of a young man. Twenty-six-year-old Michael Raper lived in Duncan with his fiance and four children, but Wednesday afternoon his promising life came to an abrupt end.
"He made my niece very happy," Diane Ferris said.
Ferris remembers the man who was months away from becoming a part of her family.
Raper was engaged to be married to her niece in February.
Monday Raper celebrated his 26 birthday.
"I just can't believe it," Ferris said. "It just happened all so fast."
Late Tuesday night Raper was working at the Bar S plant in Lawton where he was in charge of cleaning the machinery.
"He slipped and went into the machine. He was still conscious at the time," Ferris said. "So I can imagine the agony he was in, and he lost both of his legs in this accident."
Ferris says it took about two hours to free Raper, but the trauma was just too much.
He died Wednesday afternoon leaving behind a fiance and four children.
"She's going to have a tough time with this," Ferris said. "He was a good person."
News Channel 4 contacted OSHA and were referred to the US Department of Labor.
Department of Labor officials tell us an OSHA investigation is now ongoing, and they can't comment about specifics.
The investigation could take up to six months to complete.
STATEMENT FROM BAR-S FOOD SPHOENIX:
On Tuesday, July 12, an employee of the Bar-S Foods manufacturing facility in Lawton, Oklahoma was involved in a tragic accident while cleaning a piece of equipment. The employee sustained severe injuries, and was immediately transported to a local hospital where he died the next day. No other employees were involved in the incident. “The entire Bar-S Foods family is mourning the loss of our friend and co-worker,” said Tim Day, CEO and Chairman of Bar-S Foods. “We extend our deepest condolences to the employee’s family, and we are committed to helping them and our employees get through this difficult period.” Bar-S Foods is cooperating with all government authorities, and the company is launching its own investigation into the incident. Bar-S Foods has a strong safety track record and is committed to ensuring the health and safety of all its employees.
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