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Country star Tyler Rich recalls horrific story of finding dead body on NYE run

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Tyler Rich.
Tyler Rich has recalled finding a dead body on a NYE run (Picture: Paul Archuleta/Getty Images)

Country star Tyler Rich has recalled the horrific moment he found the body of a man, only a few miles into a New Year’s Eve run through woodland last week.

The 34-year-old singer, known for songs Leave Her Wild and The Difference, shared the horrible story on his Instagram over the weekend, saying the image of the man’s ‘blood-covered’ face will stay with him.

While running ‘fairly far off from where anyone else would be running’ at Chicopee Memorial State Park in Massachusetts, Rich said he spotted a man lying ‘face down’ with a bag tied around his foot.

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Thinking it was someone sleeping, he said the man looked like he was in a ‘bad place’ and after passing him by Rich decided to run back and check on him.

He wrote: ‘I realise he isn’t breathing, and as I get around to the front of him, all I see is a lifeless face covered in blood. Everywhere. Looked like maybe shot, or blunt force,’

Rich added in a series of slides: ‘Not the way I planned on closing out 2020… I guess my last day of the year made sense. My heart breaks for this poor young man 😞 This will be an image and moment of my life I’ll never forget.’

‘His skin was still white. Didn’t look like it happened too long before I got there,’ the singer wrote. ‘After some time, the officers found a gun in one of his hands under his body, which means it potentially could have been a suicide…not that there is any type of thing that could help me cope with finding him like this.’

Rich went on: ‘But, for sure knowing he wasn’t there discarded by someone else, and that he was there where he wanted to be, will at least put me a little more at ease.

‘I’m doing what I can to process this, the image, the reality. It’s been a rough 24 hours. Something I’ll never unsee or forget the couple minutes when it was just him and I down at the water as I figured out what the hell was going on and what I was going to do. Dead silent middle of a state park. Just running water and him and I. He looked like a young, normal kid. Someone with a family probably wondering where he was. Whoever you are and were, RIP friend.’

The man’s identity has not been publicly revealed, with police still investigating the death.

James Leydon, spokesman for Hampden District Attorney Anthony Gulluni said, as per MassLive: ‘There is no threat to public safety related to this incident, which does not appear to be criminal in nature.’

Sharing an update to his social media, Rich said: ‘I wish I got to meet him, have a beer with him, and talk about what was hurting him so much. I’m broken over this and I didn’t even know him. Hug your loved ones as tight as you can today.’

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The singer believed perhaps he was meant to be the one to find the man, as he went on: ‘Still reflecting on this constant feeling that I was in that random part of the park at the exact time I was supposed to be, to find that young man. There are many coincidences that make me truly believe he led me to where he was at.

‘I found him right around noon. About 30 minutes later, I looked down at my watch. My running app had paused once I stopped and found him, and it said my average pace at that time was… 11:11. I told the police and the couple that gave me their phone, to look at my watch, and that maybe that was a good omen.’

According to Rich, he’s also been able to speak with the man’s mother: ‘Yesterday, I spoke to his sweet mom, which was one of the toughest things I can remember. We talked about the timeline and series of events. She told [me] the last text he was at 11:11. And I found him just 45 minutes later. I truly believe his spirit led me down that random side of the mountain to find him.’

Rich also included additional resources for those who may be ‘in a dark place’ and need help, or want someone to talk to.

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