NEW PORT RICHEY — An experienced tree trimmer who slashed himself with a chain saw while 40 feet up a pine tree died after refusing to come down for medical attention, according to a Pasco Sheriff's Office death investigation released Monday.
Daniel Antrobus, 48, was straddling a branch above a yard in the Tanglewood East neighborhood Friday evening when he accidentally carved a 4-inch cut into the back of his right leg, exposing the bone, deputies said.
Antrobus, a co-owner of the Bottom Dollar Tree Service, yelled out that he had cut himself about 5 p.m., employee Joseph Jaworowski told deputies. Jaworowski told Antrobus to come down from the tree because of his profuse bleeding, deputies wrote, but Antrobus said he wanted to finish cutting the tree limbs.
Christine Williams, another employee who had been dragging the cut branches, rushed across Sycamore Drive to the home of Elizabeth Hopkins, who called 911.
"He'd look around every once in a while so you knew he was awake," Hopkins said. "You think about it and you think about it, and you want to go back and say, 'You've got to get yourself down.' "
Pasco Fire Rescue crews arrived at 5:15 p.m., and within a half-hour Antrobus was strapped to the top of an extended ladder and guided to the ground. By that time, deputies wrote, he had gone limp and did not respond to CPR. He was flown to Bayfront Medical Center and pronounced dead about an hour later.
Connie Parrish, Antrobus' girlfriend and a co-worker in his tree service, said he had never injured himself during his 13 years of tree work. A trained welder and "good ol' boy," he lived in Moon Lake and had, over the years, become "excellent … at bringing down trees," friend Jim Powers said.
Antrobus' friends, Parrish said, called him Monkey.
"He loved tree work, and he was the best. He loved the height," Parrish said. "He told me if he ever died, he wanted to die in a tree or fishing."
Drew Harwell can be reached at email@example.com or (727) 869-6244.