Screenshot from GoFundMe

19-Year-Old College Baseball Player Tragically Dies After Dugout Collapses on Him


A 19-year-old freshman college baseball player is dead from injuries he sustained when an illegally built makeshift dugout he was helping to disassemble at a youth baseball league park collapsed, according to a Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, city spokesperson.

The player, Angel Mercado-Ocasio, played for Central Pennsylvania College in Summerdale, Pennsylvania. He died at 11:12 p.m. Tuesday.

"Our Central Penn College family is devastated by the loss of Angel," Central Penn College President Linda Fedrizzi-Williams said in a statement Wednesday. "As friends who have become family, we are mourning the heart-wrenching loss of one of our own, a promising young athlete who senselessly lost his life while helping others enjoy the sport he loved so much."


According to Fedrizzi-Williams, team members were able to say their "goodbyes," and added, "No words can adequately express our anguish."

Two of his closest friends, Alejandro and Francisco Escudero, told WGAL's Tom Lehman that despite his 4-foot-11 frame, Mercado-Ocasio didn't "care who he was going up against. I felt like he had whatever in him to beat the opponent."

Mercado-Ocasio was assisting Gerardo "Coach Cuba" Diaz with disassembling the dugout on Monday when the collapse occurred. Diaz previously built the dugout at 7th and Radnor Park baseball field without permission from the city. In an emotional statement, Diaz said he feels responsible for what happened.


In 17 games for Central Penn this season, Mercado-Ocasio had two hits, two RBIs, and seven stolen bases. He last played in a game on May 6.

A GoFundMe campaign has been organized to assist with medical and funeral expenses. The description reads as follows:

"Angel Mercado, 19, was a fun-spirited student-athlete who loved the game of baseball. He died unexpectedly after a wooden dugout collapsed on top of him at a baseball field in Harrisburg, PA.


"Angel was simply volunteering to help get a field ready for himself and his teammates when tragedy struck. He was a promising young athlete who devastatingly lost his life while helping others enjoy the sport he loved so much.

"This loss hits heavily on his family, friends, teammates, coaches, and the entire community. We are asking for help to support his family during this difficult time. Please consider donating to help the family cover the unexpected funeral and medical costs of this remarkable young student.

"We know Angel will live on through his loved ones and teammates. We truly will have an Angel in the outfield. Thank you for your support of our #25, Angel Mercado."

Fly High, Angel..."


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