Father, first responder speaks after Floyd Co. deck collapse


by Claudia Coffey


Posted on December 23, 2013 at 6:29 PM

Updated Monday, Dec 23 at 7:55 PM

FLOYD CO., Ind. -- Terrifying moments changed a Christmas party for a Floyd Co. family when the deck they were standing on for a holiday picture suddenly collapsed Sunday.

"Right as they were taking the picture saying cheese… the rail gave way,” said says Jeremy Wilt, a family member.  “And everybody facing the clubhouse fell from their back down."
Eight year old Ainsley Wilt was sitting on her mother's lap.

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"I didn't hear anything. I just felt a deep crack or something," Ainsley Wilt said Monday.
She was posing with more than 20 family members on the Wolf Lake Clubhouse when the balcony plummeted.

"It was the deep crack then everyone fell backwards," she added.

Ainsley's father, Jeremy, was not there, but was one of the first EMS workers to respond.

“I was at work and was saying I wish I was at the Christmas party. Then I got the call. My wife said we need you here now. Ainsley's okay. The deck collapsed and a bunch of people are hurt," says Wilt said.

The children fell on top of the older relatives.

“When the older generation fell on their feet first and their hands were touching the deck and then the kids fell on top of them. Then they all went back and hit their heads on the concrete," Wilt added.

Many of the seven transported had broken bones. New Chapel Fire Department responded to the scene and officials said they were surprised there were not more serious injuries.

“It appears all the support structure is intact. It's something strange to see that things like this happen on a Sunday afternoon," said Matt Owen with the New Chapel Fire Dept.

The cause is now under investigation.