Girl Scout dies after ‘freak accident’ at Indiana camp

Three other people were seriously injured.
Updated: Jun. 25, 2019 at 3:04 PM EDT
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PERRY CO., Ind. (WFIE) - The name of the Girl Scout who died after a tree fell on her in Perry County has been released.

The sheriff’s office says the victim has been identified as 11-year-old Isabelle Meyer, of Jasper.

Isabelle Meyer
Isabelle Meyer

GoFundMe: Isabelle Meyer funeral arrangements

The Perry County Sheriff’s Office said they received a call around 11:30 a.m. Monday that a tree had fallen on campers at Camp Koch, which is just outside Cannelton.

[Jasper priest remembers Isabelle Meyer]

Isabelle and three other people, Melinda Garmen, of Mt. Vernon, Judy Kicklighter, of Evansville, and a 10-year-old girl from Boonville, were seriously hurt.

Isabelle and Kicklighter were taken to St. Vincent in Evansville where Isabelle later died from her injuries. Garmen was taken to the hospital in Owensboro.

There’s no word yet on Kicklighter’s or Garmen’s condition, but we’re told the 10-year-old girl was treated and released from Perry Co. Memorial Hospital.

[Tri-County YMCA raises thousands of dollars for Girl Scout killed in tragedy]

At a Tuesday morning news conference, authorities called the incident a “freak accident.” The sheriff’s office says the group was out for a morning hike on a gravel road and the tree fell on them while they were on the way back to the camp mess hall.

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As he told the facts of about the accident, Sergeant Robbie Lambert, public information officer at the Indiana State Police Jasper Post, told a personal story. He said he had to leave his camping trip with his own son to come to the news conference.

“I’m sure Isabelle’s parents loved her dearly," said Sergeant Lambert. "I’m sure her mother would do anything to prepare fresh dry clothes for her once more as bed time approached. I’m sure her dad would do anything to hear his baby girl laugh that she spilled ice cream just once more.”

Authorities say they don’t know why the tree fell, but say it was raining fairly hard when they were dispatched.

[Dispatcher speaks with 14 News about the call for help after Girl Scout killed at camp]

The Girl Scouts of Southwest Indiana said Camp Koch is closed.

They issued the following statement.

Girl Scouts of Southwest Indiana was deeply saddened to learn of the terrible incident involving a fallen tree that took place at our Camp Koch property today, resulting in serious injury to several campers and volunteers, and the tragic death of one of our Girl Scouts attending camp. There is nothing we take more seriously than the safety and well-being of our girls and volunteers. We have closed Camp Koch while we work with our camp officials, as well as local law enforcement to investigate the incident, and will release more information as available and appropriate. During this difficult time, the entire Girl Scout family mourns the loss of one of our girls, and we ask for privacy for the individuals and their families as they grieve and mourn this tragic loss.

Girl Scout dies after ‘freak accident’ at Indiana camp

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