Man who died from injuries in natural gas blast identified

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CHEYENNE, Wyo. — An explosion at a natural gas storage tank injured four workers on Tuesday and one has died from the injuries, officials said.

The man was identified Wednesday afternoon as Jared Loftiss, according to University of Utah Hospital's public relations specialist Marissa Villasenor. Loftiss died Tuesday night from injuries sustained in the blast.

The blast occurred as a maintenance crew was cleaning out the tank in the desert about 30 miles northwest of Green River, officials said.

Three of the injured men were taken to the University of Utah Hospital’s Burn Center and the fourth was treated locally and released. Two men are still at the Burn Center, but their condition was unknown Wednesday.

The cause of the blast is still unknown and an investigation is ongoing.

Statement from Loftiss family

"Jared was a loving husband and father who worked hard to support his family. Jared spent every spare moment he had making memories with his wife and kids. Jared was such a great example of true Christlike love to all who knew him. Jared was beyond excited to find out (his wife was) expecting their sixth child this coming May.

He had seven years of experience in his line of work. Jared and his crew always looked out for each other. They were like a second family to him.

The family would like to thank the emergency crews on site as well as those who cared for him at the various hospitals as well as the LifeFlight crew.

Jared was a superhero in our lives as well as his boys and wife's life. We will truly miss his infectious laugh as well as his wonderful sense of humor.

An account has been set up on under the title Help Montanaela Loftiss.

Thank you on behalf of the family."

Contributing: Mead Gruver, Associated Press


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