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Corn bin incident claims Ellsworth area farmer

ELLSWORTH -- A 75-year-old rural Ellsworth man died Monday afternoon after he became trapped inside a corn bin while it was being unloaded. The victim was identified as Patrick H. Harrington.

Authorities were notified of the accident at the Patrick and Margaret Harrington farm, W3593 610th Ave., town of El Paso, at 1:55 p.m. The farm is located about a mile east of CTH BB and five miles south of Hwy. 29.

Ellsworth firefighters and EMS personnel "worked tirelessly to empty the corn bin and locate the missing man" for nearly 90 minutes before he was located, according to Pierce sheriff's deputy Robin Kivel.

Effort to resuscitate him were unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead by Medical Examiner Sue Dzubay.

A medical helicopter from Life Link was also summoned to the scene and its staff assisted with the rescue attempt.

Dzubay said Harrington had been working with several semi-drivers, unloading the 18,000 bushel bin throughout the day. A driver had just repositioned his truck and exited the cab to discover Harrington missing. After a short search around the farm, workers discovered a pole inside bin, leading them to speculate that Harrington may have gone inside in an attempt to free a blockage near the bin's base.

There was about 4,000 bushels of corn remaining in the 36-foot bin when the accident occurred.

The incident remains under investigation, Kivel stated in a press release.