Mormon Missionaries Die in Romania

Mormon Heretic death, international, LDS, missionary, Mormon, news 11 Comments

I want to let everyone know of a very unfortunate situation in Romania.  According to this Deseret News article, Elder McKay Choy Burrows, 20, of Highland, Utah, and Elder Jace Edwards Davis, 20, of Logandale, Nevada, died from accidental natural gas asphyxiation due to a gas leak in their apartment sometime Friday night in Romania.  It’s terrible that such a seemingly preventable tragedy happened to these 2 young men.

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  1. According to a local report from Timisoara where they died, a friend wanted to stop by and visit with them Saturday evening. He tried calling them and knocking on their door, and panicked when there was no response, so he knocked the door in. He found one of the missionaries in the bedroom and the other in the bathroom. Their neighbors are said to have heard strange sounds earlier in the morning. Most likely the one missionary who made it to the bathroom woke up coughing from lack of oxygen and tried to get out but didn’t make it far.

    This is very sad. This is the first death(s) of missionaries in Romania, and I’m sure it has quite impacted Romanian Mormons. While I served there, we never had anything close to this kind of a problem, so I don’t expect other such stories. I’m sure the church there will tighten up the standards of apartments for missionaries.

  2. This report has a clearer picture.

    A friend who had a key to their apartment rang the bell for some time. He thought it was weird that they didn’t respond, and he tried to unlock the door, but another key was on the inside doorknob and so he couldn’t open it. Afraid, he called the fire department who entered the apartment through the window and found the two missionaries dead. They have pictures of the fire department at the scene and some of the other missionaries in Timisoara.

  3. I am so very sad about this tragedy, my son serverd in Romania and I lived for every e-mail. I felt the loss just sending him off, I can’t imagine the feelings loss the families are feeling for the loss of theirs sons. My prayers are with them.

  4. Thanks for the links Dan, but the first one doesn’t say anything about the missionaries’ friend breaking down the door. After not being able to enter the apartment with his key, the friend called the police and firefighters who entered the apartment through the window. They did, indeed, find one of the Elders in the bathroom and one in his bed. Too tragic. This actually almost happened to us when I was serving in Bacau, Romania. The pilot light had gone out and we had left the gas on just a bit for a few days before we realized where the smell was coming from. We counted ourselves lucky that day. Way too bad for these guys and their families!

  5. This is horrible. In Chile, we had specific requirements for our apartments because a situation as described had occurred (although maybe not with missionaries).

  6. I received a copy of an email sent by the mission presidents wife that the elders did not show up for a meeting that evening. Attmepts made to contact the elders without success. The other 2 elders went to their apartment and saw there coats inside. The mission president was notified and he advised them to call the police. Entry into the apartment was achieved by breaking a window. The odor of gas fumes were strong. The bodies were then found.

  7. Thank you so much for translating the Romanian reports for us. This story touches me twice because I have several cousins that were adopted from Romania in 1990 and my aunts helped open up the Church in Romania and converted their guide/interpreter who became the first Branch President in Romania. Also, my own son died from CO asphyxiation when he was 8 years old, also in 1990. The saddest thing is that they died on the day my daughter was getting married in the Nauvoo temple. My heart really goes out to their families…

  8. religion is a human psychosis…it’s not real…it only exists in human’s mind…in 50 years’ time religion/God/Jesus won’t exist anymore…

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