His neighbors say James McNeil was doing something he's done many times before...bush hogging...or mowing grass with a tractor on Thursday afternoon when tragedy struck. Police say he had stopped to work on the tractor..and when he reached up to start it....it jumped into gear...and rolled over top of him.
“It really shocked me because he'd worked around equipment all of his life.”
Frank Vanzant has been a friend of McNeil's for about 15 years.
“Just a nice guy. A good neighbor. Good friend,” Vanzant said.
The coroner says McNeil died of multiple injuries at Baptist Regional Medical Center.
McNeil's full time profession was in the construction industry, although neighbors say he was semi-retired and devoted much of his time to his passion of farming.
“It's a tragedy, but if you do that type of work, it happens from time to time. You always hate it when it does,” says Vanzant.
Funeral services for McNeil are set for 2 o'clock Sunday at Hart Funeral Home in Corbin.