Millersville University groundskeeper dies in lawn mower fire

A Millersville University groundskeeper died after being injured Wednesday afternoon in a fire while riding a lawnmower, the college said.

Michael L. Keefer, 60, a longtime employee at the university, was riding the mower near the football stadium when the fire broke out, LancasterOnlie reported.

Keefer was taken to Lancaster General Hospital and then transferred to Lehigh Valley Hospital where he died about 8 p.m.Wednesday.

"What we know is that Mike was mowing, there was a fire involving the mower and Mike was severely injured. At this point we don't know what started the fire," university spokeswoman Janet Kacskos told LancasterOnline. She said employees were "in a state of shock." 

Kackos said the university and state fire marshall are investigating the incident.

University President John Anderson sent an email to faculty, staff and students Thursday letting them know of  Keefer's death, the website reported.

"Mr. Keefer was a groundskeeper for Millersville since 1989," Anderson wrote, noting that counseling is available to help employees through this difficult time. "Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, two sons and their family."