Man killed in fireworks explosion


MOOSIC, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WOLF) -- Police converged on a field in Moosic after a man was found dead on Wednesday morning.

Now the coroner says he knows what killed him. We also spoke with a friend who was there shortly after the body was discovered.

"He was probably one of my oldest friends. I've known him since grade school," says victim's friend Chris Gierulski.

Police descended on a field on Davis Street in Moosic, between I-81 and the Scranton line.

The coroner says that's where Ronney Rutkosky, 32, died in a fireworks explosion.

Gierulski says Rutkosky was supposed to pick up another trucker friend who broke down in Dunmore around 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday night.

"He went to go pick him up and he never showed up and we were trying to find out what happened to him last night when he didn't show up. It was not like him not to show up and that's his car right there," says Gierulski.

Gierulski says the friend, Jeff, who'd broken down, spotted the car and called him about it around 8:15 a .m, but no one was inside. Police later blocked off the car with tape.

"We looked around back, looked around over here in the woods, and he's back there dead," says Gierulski.

Most of the officers left the area shortly after noon. They did put down orange paint here to show where the car was parked.

A worker at a nearby store says he did meet a neighbor he knew as "Ron."

"Nice enough neighbor, quiet, kind of a quiet sort but would talk to you and friendly," says employee Patrick McDonald.

Gierulski says he and his friend enjoyed skiing and even went on trips like one to Utah in 2011. They also hit the slopes in Vermont, and here in northeastern PA.

He encouraged Rutkosky to get into trucking, which took him on the road around the northeast for up to a week at a time, but his home was in Scranton.

He never imagined he would see his friend dead at such a young age.

"He was on his way to Dunmore and he made it he made it right here, which is only about a block from his house, and for some reason he pulled over here and he's in the woods all beat up and dead," says Gierulski.

Coroner Tim Rowland says the fireworks explosion caused multiple traumatic injuries, killing Rutkosky. He says it is not suspicious and he believes there was no foul play involved.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off