Tallahassee contractor killed in chainsaw accident left cross in stump before death

George Carlton, 55, was known for carving crosses into stumps after he completed tree cutting jobs.

By: Anna Phillips | WECT News
September 7, 2019

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) — A Tallahassee man hired to remove storm debris from Hurricane Dorian has died after a chainsaw accident in northern New Hanover County, North Carolina.

Lt. Jerry Brewer with the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office says a homeowner hired 55-year-old Chris Carlton from Tallahassee, Florida, as an individual contractor to remove Hurricane Dorian debris from a property on Farley Drive near North Kerr Avenue.

Carlton, who owned Eager Beaver Tree Service, was cutting trees when he was fatally wounded in chainsaw accident around 3 p.m. on September 7.

The homeowner says he was cutting grass when it happened and Carlton ran towards him for help.

The homeowner says he performed CPR until EMS crews arrived, but Carlton didn’t survive. He also says Carlton had more than 30 years experience and was known for cutting crosses into the stumps he left behind. One such stump is plainly visible with a cross at the home where he died.

The New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office is conducting the death investigation. A sheriff's office spokesperson says Carlton bled to death after the chainsaw cut him in the neck.

Carlton was working alone.

This marks the third Hurricane Dorian related death in North Carolina. A man in Oriental was pulling a boat from the water when he had a heart attack and died on September 5. In Columbus County, an 85-year-old fell off a ladder while preparing his home for the storm and died.

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