An autopsy on Shain Gandee, part of the cast of the MTV reality show “Buckwild,” confirmed what I suspected: He died of carbon monoxide poisoning.

The Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department Tuesday announced the cause of death of  Gandee, 21, his uncle David Gandee, 48, and friend Donald Robert Myers, 27.

“The manner of death is accidental and the cause was carbon monoxide poisoning for all three subjects,” the sheriff’s department said in a press release.

The bodies of all three men were found in Gandee’s Ford Bronco pick-up truck in Sissonville, W. Va.

The three men were reported missing Sunday afternoon after they said they were going to go off-road driving. They were found by one of Shain’s friends, who was searching the trails and ridges in the area for him and the others.

“The vehicle sat unevenly, but upright, and was partially submerged in deep mud,” the sheriff’s department said. “Mud was covering the lower part of the passenger side door of the vehicle, but the driver’s side of the vehicle was above the mud.  The muffler of the vehicle was completely below the surface of the mud.”

As soon as I read about the circumstances of Shain’s death, the truck stuck in the mud, I knew he and the others were victims of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Anytime a car’s exhaust pipe gets blocked, the lethal gas will be released into the interior of a vehicle, potentially killing its occupants.

This winter, I blogged about several horrible accidents were auto exhaust pipes were blocked by snow. In one case, a father had put his two kids in his running car while he shoveled snow so they could keep warm. But snow had blocked the tailpipe, and the children died.

At best, Gandee’s death may make the public more aware of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning and blocked exhaust pipes.


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