A man from southeast Missouri who had been complaining of chest pain died of a heart attack one day after we was bitten by a copperhead snake while camping on the Current River, the Carter County coronerís office confirmed today.
Terry Brown, 50, of Ellsinore, died Sunday in Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center. The state Department of Conservation says his death is only the third on record in Missouri attributed to a venomous snake. The others were in 1933 and 1965.
Erik McSpadden, deputy coroner in Carter County, said Brown had been complaining of chest pains for several days before he was stricken. McSpadden said his office listed the cause of death as a heart attack, with the snake bite as a contributing factor.
"It definitely contributed to his death," McSpadden said. "Itís hard to know if it was the venom or the excitement he experienced from being bitten."