The man who died in Whitehorse’s Riverdale neighbourhood this week following an explosion has been identified by the Yukon Coroner’s Service as David Gould.
Gould, 77, was asleep at his home on Bates Crescent when his neighbour’s home exploded on the morning of Nov. 14. A news release from the coroner’s service states that Gould “died as a result of the damage caused to his home.”
The coroner’s statement additionally notes that an autopsy will be conducted next week.
The blast that killed Gould could be heard throughout the neighbourhood. According to a City of Whitehorse press release, emergency responders found “one home destroyed and adjacent homes with extensive damage” when they arrived on the scene.
According to a Whitehorse RCMP news release, police responded to the home explosion at 5:30 a.m. In addition to the deceased, another individual with critical injuries was transported to hospital.
Yukon politicians have commented on the tragic explosion. On Nov. 16, John Streicker, MLA for Mount Lorne-Southern Lakes, addressed Gould’s death on the floor of the legislature, calling the deceased a “well-known member of the Yukon’s placer mining community.”
“Friends remember him as a true Yukoner who spent his life helping others. I’d like to offer my deepest condolences; his death is a real loss to the placer community, to his family and to his friends,” Streicker said.
At the start of this week’s Whitehorse city council meeting, which was held on the evening of Nov. 14, Mayor Laura Cabott shared words about the explosion on behalf of the council and city.
In her address, she noted that the blast impacted over a dozen homes and that neighbourhood residents “are shaken.”
“On behalf of council, our thoughts go out to those impacted by this very tragic incident,” Cabott said.
The coroner’s statement notes that Gould’s death continues to be investigated by the RCMP’s Major Crime Unit and Forensic Identification Service, as well as the Whitehorse Fire Department and Yukon Coroner’s Service.
“We extend our deep condolences to Mr. Gould’s family and friends, as well as to the many residents of Bates Crescent and the Riverdale community who have been so severely impacted by this traumatic event,” reads the coroner’s statement, which concludes by noting that the family has asked for privacy at this time.
Contact Matthew Bossons at firstname.lastname@example.org