Coroner IDs man killed by fallen tree at Notre Dame


Family and friends are mourning the death of an excavation worker killed after being hit by a falling tree while on the job at the University of Notre Dame on Thursday.

It happened near Bulla and Twyckenham in South Bend around 10:40 a.m.

That's on the eastern perimeter of campus where a crew was clearing trees for a new parking lot.

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The St. Joseph County coroner's office tells WSBT 22-year-old Mark Ellsworth, Jr. of R&R Excavating was the one struck by the tree. R&R Excavating was contracted by the university.

The cause of death has been ruled blunt force trauma to the chest.

After the tragic accident, work on the site was suspended.

Ellsworth wrote a post on his Facebook page near Notre Dame just hours before his death, saying, "Push harder than you did yesterday if you want a better today. Hope everyone has a kick a** Thursday. God bless."

Many people who knew him are posting messages on his page like "Rest in peace."

"We extend our deepest condolences to his family and to all those involved in (Thursday morning's) terrible accident," said Notre Dame President Rev. John Jenkins. "Reminded how precious and fragile life is, we pray for strength and peace for all who are suffering as a result."