The Walking Dead stuntman who suffered massive head injuries in a fall Wednesday on the set has died, according to multiple reports. Click on Radar's gallery for more on the shocking incident that shut down the hit AMC show and has stunned the cast.
John Bernecker passed away at Atlanta Medical Center on Wednesday, as Deadline reported. He had allegedly been doing a stunt on the hit zombie apocalypse show when things went awry.
Coweta County Coroner Richard Hawk told the online publication that Bernecker died of blunt force trauma at 6:30 PM ET on Wednesday.
A Deadline source said Bernecker and an actor "were rehearsing a fight scene that was supposed to end with a routine fall from a balcony, but he lost his footing and fell 30 feet to a concrete floor."
Shortly before he fell 22 feet from a balcony onto a concrete floor in the stunt, Bernecker told a fellow Walking Dead actor that he had done "a few" high fall stunts before, but "never this high up," according to a Coweta County, Georgia Sheriff's report obtained by The Hollywood Reporter. On Friday, Bernecker was taken off life support after having been declared brain-dead at the hospital.
Current and former actors on The Walking Dead, which was filming its eighth season before being shut down over the accident, offered condolences about Bernecker. AMC said in a statement to Variety that it had temporarily shut down production after Mr. Bernecker’s "tragic accident."
Major Dodson, who played actor Sam Anderson on The Walking Dead, took to Twitter to say, "Our thoughts are with John Bernecker's family."
According to reports, Bernecker’s family has agreed to donate the stuntman's organs through LifeLink of Georgia, a nonprofit group dedicated to the recovery of organs and tissue for transplantation. Benecker's stunt credits include the recent features Logan, Get Out, The Fate of the Furious and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2.
As Radar has reported, stuntmen shoot dangerous scenes and have died on other sets. Federal workplace monitor OSHA and SAG-AFTRA, the union that represents stunt performers, have launched investigations into The Walking Dead accident.
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