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Arvada parks worker dies after his ride-on mower tips into lake

Joe Herrin, a parks maintenance worker who has been with the city since May 2018, was using the mower near the edge of Birdland Lake at Jack B. Tomlinson Park

This story first appeared in a Colorado Community Media newspaper. The Colorado Sun is an owner of CCM.

An Arvada parks department employee who was injured when his ride-on mower tipped into a lake, trapping him in the water, has died, the city said Wednesday.

Joe Herrin, a parks maintenance worker who had been with the city since May 2018, was using the mower near the edge of Birdland Lake at Jack B. Tomlinson Park on July 22 when the accident occurred.

John Herrin. (Handout)

According to a statement by the city, the Arvada Fire Protection District and the Arvada Police Department responded to the scene and were able to remove Herrin from the water.

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He was taken to Lutheran Medical Center where he was admitted to the intensive care unit. Herrin died on Wednesday.  

“These have been painful and sad times for the City of Arvada, our team members and citizens,” Arvada Mayor Marc Williams said. “We are further saddened by the death of Joe Herrin, who was a valued member of our city team. We offer our sincere condolences to his wife and family, and his teammates and friends.” 

The police department is investigating the death, and the city plans an internal workplace safety assessment to prevent similar accidents. 

Herrin’s family has set up a GoFundMe to cover his medical expenses.

“When something like this happens, we do a full review to evaluate, learn and make sure it doesn’t happen again,” Arvada spokesman Ben Irwin said. “That process is just beginning. We will share additional information as we do so, but also navigating supporting Joe’s family.”


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