Country Stampede Deaths Under Investigation
It's an annual event that brings some of the biggest names in country and some of the best fun of summer to Manhattan, Kansas. But this year's Country Stampede was dampered by two deaths, one of them which remains a mystery.
Jacob D. Kreutzer, 19, of Beaver Crossing, Neb., was pronounced dead at an area hospital shortly after he was taken from the festival last Thursday, June 24. The teenager died of an "unexplained internal injury," according to the Topeka Capital-Journal. Anyone with information on Kreutzer's death is asked to call the Pottawatomie (Kan.) County Sheriff's office at 785-457-3353.
Only about 48 hours after the teen's death, another fan was transported from the festival site with grave injuries. Luke D. Nihart, 32, an 11-year veteran of the Kansas Wildlife and Parks, died just after 3:00 AM Saturday after he crashed his ATV. The man, who was not wearing a helmet, was traveling at a high rate of speed when he lost control of the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at an area hospital about two hours after the crash.
Saturday's featured performers, Montgomery Gentry, waited a few moments to take the stage so performers and festival goers could pay tribute with a moment of silence for Nihart, who in 2005 received an award for his heroism in a water rescue.