Utah boy dies after ‘tragic’ tetherball accident

The apparent accident happened at a family corn maze near Richfield.

(GoFundMe) The Knight family poses for a photo included in a GoFundMe campaign raising money for emergency medical bills and funeral costs after the youngest member, Maximus Knight, died Saturday, Oct. 28, 2023, in a "tragic accident."

A 13-year-old Utah boy died Saturday after he was found with a tetherball rope wrapped around his neck in what family members are calling a “tragic accident.”

The apparent accident happened at Knights Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch, which is owned by the boy’s family, according to the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office. The maze is located in Venice, near Richfield, about 160 miles south of Salt Lake City.

The boy had been helping his family clean up the maze on Saturday, the sheriff’s office said, but after some time, he did not rejoin relatives. When they went to look for him, they found him at the tetherball pole, unresponsive.

Responding paramedics were able to restore his pulse, the sheriff’s office said. The boy was then flown to a Salt Lake City hospital, where he later died.

There were no signs of foul play at the scene, according to the sheriff’s office. The boy’s death is being investigated by the state medical examiner’s office.

Officials have not released the boy’s name, but a relative in a GoFundMe campaign identified him as Maximus Knight.

“The youngest of his family, Maximus made every effort to impress his big brothers and care for those around him,” wrote his aunt, the campaign’s organizer. “Our hearts are broken as we struggle to make sense of this tragedy.”

As of Tuesday morning, the GoFundMe had raised more than $20,000 to help the boy’s family with emergency medical bills and funeral costs.