Firefighter Killed Biltmore Estate: In a freakish accident, during a windstorm at the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina, the decorated firefighter Casey Skudin was killed on Friday afternoon. He was driving along with his family in an S.U.V. The accident happened when a tree fell on the vehicle due to a windstorm.
Casey was assigned to Ladder Company 137 in Rockaway, Queens. He came to North Carolina along with his wife and children to celebrate his 46th birthday. His birthday was on Father’s Day, Sunday.
His wife, Angela Skudin, has posted about this on her Instagram account. The New York Fire Department has also issued a statement in this regard and has promised to provide full support to Casey’s family and colleagues.
The accident happened near an entry gate at the Biltmore Estate, which is a popular tourist destination in Asheville. It is a sprawling 8,000-acre resort and George W. Vanderbilt’s former chateau. Suddenly, due to a windstorm, a heavy limb blew down from a tree, and struck Casey’s vehicle, as per the statement given by the estate.
In her Instagram post, Ms. Skudin said that she and their older child escaped the car without any major injuries while their younger child was admitted to the hospital with minor injuries and is undergoing treatment.
According to the Fire Department, Mr. Skudin was the valedictorian of his fire academy class. He worked at a separate engine company in Brooklyn and after that, he moved to the ladder house in the Rockaways. There he became a capable rescue swimmer.
In 2009, he was decorated with the department’s Fire Chiefs Association Memorial Medal for rescuing a drowning surfer off the 96th Street beach. He entered the water untethered.
Mr. Skudin belongs to a well-known surf family that has several popular surf shops and surf classes under the name Skudin Surf in Long Beach, Long Island, and Rockaway. His cousin Cliff Skudin said that Casey was actually a lifeguard for the town of Hempstead, New York, for almost two decades as he was an expert surfer.
According to his cousin, Casey remained constantly outdoors, and he regularly took his family to Montauk, New York, or for an outing on hikes. He used to compete in triathlons, was on the Fire Department’s surf team, and was also a CrossFit trainer.
On Sunday, Skudin Surf put together a memorial in remembrance of Casey where his friends and loved ones could stop by and sign Casey’s surfboard. The shop is also planning to have a ceremonial paddle-out on June 26th at the Lido West beach in his memory.