Country singer Tyler Rich is mourning the man he found dead in a Massachusetts state park during a run on New Year’s Eve.
Rich, 34, was two miles into a planned four-mile run in western Massachusetts’ Chicopee Memorial State Park when he discovered the lifeless man in a heavily wooded area “far off from where anyone else would be running,” he wrote on Instagram the next day.
“Not the way I planned on closing out 2020… My heart breaks for this poor young man,” Rich wrote in the Jan. 1 post. “This will be an image and moment of my life, I’ll never forget.”
At first, Rich said he ran around the man, who was face down. But then he circled back to check on him. “I realize he isn’t breathing, and as I get around to the front of him, all I see is a lifeless face covered in blood,” he wrote.
“I’ll never unsee or forget the couple of 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,” wrote Rich.
Rich ran to the main path and used a parkgoer’s phone to call police. An investigation revealed that the death might have been by suicide, he wrote.
Police are still investigating the death, telling MassLive the incident was “not criminal in nature.”
On Saturday, Rich discussed how he seemed to be fated to make the discovery. In a new Instagram post, the singer said he was “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,” wrote Rich, who had spoken to the man’s mother — “one of the toughest things I can remember,” he wrote.
In the post, Rich discussed the “unbelievable” outpouring of “support, and prayer, I’ve received from you all about this, for him, his family, and everyone involved.”
“Community is so important, remember to tell people how much you love them, and remember to talk to someone, anyone, when you are feeling lost and alone, cause you’re not,” Rich wrote.
Suicide Lifeline: If you or someone you know may be struggling with suicidal thoughts, you can call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) any time of day or night or chat online.
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