(KANAWHA COUNTY, W. Va.) — Shain Gandee, the star of MTV’s Buckwild reality show, died of carbon monoxide poisoning inside a Ford Bronco that was partially submerged in deep mud near his home in rural West Virginia, according to autopsy results released Tuesday.
The deaths of Gandee and two others in the vehicle were ruled accidental, Cpl. B.D. Humphreys of the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office told ABC News Tuesday afternoon.
Gandee, 21, starred in the series Buckwild, which follows the exploits of his friends and family.
Gandee, his uncle, David Gandee, 48, and Donald Robert Myers, 27, were found dead inside the Bronco on Monday. Gandee and his uncle were last seen around 3 a.m. Sunday at Larry’s Bar, where they told friends they were leaving to go four-wheeling.
About 30 hours later, the county dispatch received a call of a disabled vehicle in a rural part of the county and used all-terrain vehicles to access the area, finding Gandee behind the wheel of the SUV, which was upright but submerged in deep mud, Humphreys said. The muffler was completely below the mud’s surface.
“There was no damage to the vehicle from an impact. It was just stuck in a mud hole,” Humphreys said.
The area where the Bronco was found is one mile from Gandee’s home in Sissonville, according to officials. Police used a bulldozer to remove the Bronco from the mud.
MTV announced in February that Buckwild would return for a second season. The cable network has confirmed it would suspend production of the reality series.
A spokesperson for MTV released a statement to ABC News:
“We are shocked and saddened by the terrible news about Shain Gandee, and those involved in this tragic incident. We are waiting for more information, but at this time our main concern is for the Gandee family and their friends. Our thoughts and prayers are with them. Shain had a magnetic personality, with a passion for life that touched everyone he met and we will miss him dearly.”
On the show’s website, Gandee was described as “the sociable and loyal High School Prom King who loves four-wheeling, but loves his parents most of all.”
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