Worker dies after being hit by falling object at St. Paul construction site

The incident happened Tuesday afternoon at Phalen Regional Park in St. Paul.
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Cory Buerke

A worker died after being hit by a falling object while at a construction site in St. Paul on Tuesday. 

The incident happened around 3 p.m. with St. Paul Fire EMS responding to a report of a "traumatic injury," with the Pioneer Press reporting that it happened at Phalen Regional Park's new China Garden. 

The 38-year-old man hit by the object was taken to a hospital but did not survive. He's been identified in a GoFundMe as Cory Buerke. 

"We have lost a dear friend, husband, son and brother far too soon," the online fundraiser explains. "Cory Buerke passed away on Tuesday June 18 after a tragic accident. He will be remembered for his big heart, for always making people laugh and for always being willing to do anything for his family and friends."

"He will be greatly missed and always in the hearts of those that were blessed to know him," the GoFundMe adds.

As of Thursday morning, the fundraiser had generated near $2,900 of a $4,000 goal. The proceeds will be used to support Buerke's wife, and help with funeral expenses. 

Buerke was an employee of Acoustics Associates, a Golden Valley-based company. 

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is investigating and further details about what happened have not been released to the public. There have been three other workplace fatalities in St. Paul this year, according to MNOSHA.

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According to the City of St. Paul, work at the China Garden this summer includes the construction of an archway, which has closed a bridge and path leading to the Xiang Jiang Pavilion. It's not clear if Buerke was working near the archway. 

The pavilion was installed at the park last summer, with the entire concept design nearing completion. 

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