Paralyzed after falling from tree, Indiana deer hunter opts to end life

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An Indiana deer hunter left paralyzed after falling from a tree died after he decided to remove himself from life support, state authorities said Wednesday.

Timothy E. Bowers, 32, of Decatur was hunting deer Saturday afternoon when he fell about 16 feet to the ground from an elevated tree stand, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources said.

Bowers suffered a spine injury and paralysis, authorities said.

On Sunday, “Bowers self-elected to remove himself from life support systems and died” that evening, the department’s statement said.

Bowers was a newlywed, having married Abbey Logan on August 3, the Haggard-Sefton & Hirschy Funeral Home of Decatur said on its website. The funeral home said memorials could go to the couple’s Baby Bowers Education Fund.

His widow is expecting a baby, said one acquaintance on the funeral home’s website.

“To the entire family so sorry for you loss,” wrote Dean Dubach. “Tim was a good person. I just talked to him in the grain line. He said he was so happy with life, beautiful wife, baby on the way, business was good, crops were good. God bless the family.”

Bowers also owned and ran 5 Points Transmission shop in Decatur, the funeral home said.

His tragic decision to end his life prompted many comments on social media.

“Tim was a great guy,” Aaron Cowans wrote on Facebook. “… always took the time out to help a customer in need … I’m guilty of not wearing my safety belt and I hope everyone can take sum thing good away from this. prayers to all his family and friends as he was well known and liked. … r.i.p. Tim!”

State conservation officers urge hunters to always wear a safety harness when climbing up or down tree stands and to use a haul line to raise equipment up and down.


  • Stacey

    Thoughts and prayers going to his family. My husband & I as well as friends and family are hunters so its scary to think about but does happen. I wish he had given the doctors time to see if there was something they could do for him. I think he did it to take the burden off his family of having to take care of him but its also selfish to make them suffer not having him around anymore. I hope all hunters can read this & always remember to wear their safety belts. RIP Tim

    • Psykes

      He is lucky he was conscious enough to make this decision for himself. The only selfish people in situations like this are those who force a loved one to stay alive because they “can’t” let them go. Not many would choose to go on living this way.

  • sinnerfrank

    His choice brave young man,how many of us have said it but would we be strong enough to make the choice he did,he removed the guilt that any family member would have to make such a choice !!

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