Authorities say an Indiana man died after he climbed down on a suburban Chicago elevated train track to urinate and was accidentally electrocuted by the third rail.
Zachary McKee, 27, a resident of Ossian, Ind., was in Chicago for the weekend to celebrate his brother-in-law's birthday and watch Sunday's Cubs game, according to his Twitter account. "Going to be a crazy weekend in Chicago," McKee posted the week before his death. Sunday afternoon, he posted a photo of a bar in Wrigleyville with the tweet “All u can drink, play ball.”
Surveillance tape from the CTA Purple Line South Station platform shows McKee climbing onto the tracks, apparently to urinate, and then apparently stumbling, causing him to fall onto the third rail, according to a press release from the Evanston Police Department.
McKee was pronounced dead shortly afterward at Saint Francis Hospital.The Cook County medical examiner ruled the man's death an accident due to electrocution.
McKee's family is disputing the police account, which makes McKee's actions seem reckless, painting a portrait of a thoughtful and disciplined former Marine who completed tours in Iraq and Afghanistan and was weeks from graduating with a political science degree, according to CBS Chicago.
“For the first time in his life he finally let his hair down for a few days, and he died from it,” Zachary's father, Mark McKee, told the TribLocal. "We’re heartbroken. I miss him to death.”
McKee had plans to work in the Indiana statehouse this summer before attending law school in the fall.