A devastating house explosion in South Dakota has left authorities baffled as they conduct an investigation into the tragic incident that claimed the lives of three individuals and left two young children with severe injuries.
According to Stanley County Sheriff Brad Rathbun, the explosion occurred at approximately 10:20 a.m. on Wednesday at a residence situated about 11 miles southwest of Fort Pierre. The impact of the explosion proved fatal, resulting in the heartbreaking loss of six-month-old Harper Hupp and her grandmother, LaDonna Hupp (61), at the scene. William Hupp (66), the grandfather, tragically succumbed to his injuries while receiving medical treatment at a hospital, as reported by the AP and Fox News.
The blast also left two boys, Myles (5) and Royce (3), with severe burns. They were swiftly airlifted to a specialized burn unit at a hospital in St. Paul, Minnesota. Kelsey and Trevor Hupp, the children’s parents, were away at work in Pierre when the explosion shattered their lives. It was revealed that LaDonna and William Hupp were Trevor Hupp’s parents.
Providing an update on the condition of the children, Kelsey Hupp shared on a Caring Bridge account that Myles has sustained first- and second-degree burns covering 10% of his body, while Royce has endured the more severe third-degree burns on 25% of his chest and arms.
Despite the arduous road to recovery ahead, both boys have exhibited remarkable signs of resilience, such as squeezing hands, wiggling toes, and occasionally waking up from sedation.
In the face of this devastating tragedy, the Hupp family has received an overwhelming outpouring of support. Funds are being raised through GoFundMe and First Dakota National Bank, where Trevor Hupp was employed, as detailed in a GoFundMe campaign. Remarkably, the community’s generosity has already amassed over $322,000 in donations as of Thursday.
The explosion was heard by nearby neighbors in the rural area, who promptly alerted the authorities. In response, the South Dakota State Fire Marshal’s office has initiated an investigation into the incident. While the cause of the explosion remains unknown and subject to ongoing scrutiny, Sheriff Rathbun clarified that foul play is currently not suspected. The community continues to rally behind the grieving family, offering prayers and unwavering support during this incredibly challenging period.