FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – An e-cigarette is being blamed for the death of a Fort Worth man. His family said a vape pen exploded while he was trying to use it.

Alice Brown raised her grandson, William Eric Brown, as if he were her son. This week, she will be burying him.

“He had a future ahead of him; a life ahead of him,” said Alice.

The Tarrant County Medical Examiner says the 24-year-died January 29 from a stroke caused by a severed artery from a vaporizer pen explosion.

William Eric Brown (courtesy: Brown family)

The explosion happened in the parking lot of a vape shop near Beach and Golden Triangle in Fort Worth, Sunday, January 27.

Smoke and Vape DZ told CBS 11 Brown didn’t buy anything, but wanted help using a Mechanical Mod style vape pen. The manager said they don’t sell the brand because it’s been known to have issues.

The shop manager said he called an ambulance when they saw Brown in trouble in the parking lot.

“That went across his lip, apparently somehow, and cut his lip,” said Brown’s grandmother. “That three-piece thing went into his throat and stayed there, and that’s what (doctors) should have taken out as soon as they got to the hospital, and they decided to wait until Monday or Tuesday.”

Brown was taken to JPS in Fort Worth by ambulance.

His family said doctors took x-rays and knew Brown had a piece of e-cigarette lodged in his throat and put him in a medically-induced coma, but never operated on him.

JPS said it can’t discuss specifics due to privacy laws, but added in a statement:

“We hold ourselves to the highest standards in providing high-quality healthcare and will take family concerns seriously as we review all that transpired.”

“Murder. Not quite 25-years-old, and he should have had a long life ahead of him,” said Alice. “He should have made it if they had done the surgery.”

His grandmother said Tarrant County investigators told her the issue is the battery on the device.

The Food and Drug Administration has warned about the dangers of exploding e-cigarettes.

Brown’s grandmother said she’s not interested in suing because it won’t bring him back.

MaryAnn Martinez

Comments (164)
  1. Elena Tbuor says:

    Cigarrettes kill!

  2. Wesley Duca says:

    It was not the battery that killed him it was bad decisions on the hospital sorry to say. Obviously the devise shorted out either he had little to no knowledge about battery safety. Sorry this happened but this is what happens when people don’t take the proper measures on safety!

  3. Cathy Lee says:

    These kids are modifying these vape cigs and even use for pot. So don’t go blaming the companies for this. Kids will try anything. They think the more vapor that comes out the cooler it is. So guess they find a way to up the amount of vapor. Plus they use pot oil as well. They are hurting the vape industry where it is helping people to give up tobacco. But let’s not go after alcohol that causes all kind of problems. Let’s just go after vape ecigs. And let’s legalize drugs. Are these people really this stupid?

    1. Kris Scott says:

      Yes you are. Your comment is off base on virtually every level. Anyone who knows anything about the subject sees you for what you are. Totally and completely ignorant about the subject. No one is modifying anything, it’s too dangerous, see above. As far as modifying for marijuana. There is no modification necessary to the device. Only the liquid contained within. Try to stick to discussions you actually understand.

  4. Would like to see a video of this incident, pretty please.

  5. Sandra Isrow says:

    Doesn’t look to be a pillar of society. All tatted up, metal hanging from his mouth and something going on with the skin above his eyebrows …. Sorry, but I don’t look at this to be a big loss. Grandparents have a tendency to be TOO lenient and shouldn’t be raising kids….obviously!

  6. Ed Coulbourne says:

    Happened to me China POS a millisecond after hitting it BOOM like a stick of Dynamite top went thru ceiling sliced my pinky finger open only use regulated Ecigs type with microchip for safety paraminters throw Mods away……………

  7. Kris Scott says:

    When will they start reporting on WHY these explosions happen. It’s not random and 99.9% of the time it’s operator ignorance. Reporting like this is not helpful. What would be, is explaining why this happens so others don’t repeat the same mistake. It extremely simple to avoid. Otherwise this would be happening in large numbers daily. It’s not the batteries either. A Tesla 100D has 8256 of the same batteries in it. They aren’t exploding.

  8. Jackson Shrader says:

    They need to tell us the brand and if it was real or a knockoff. There is never enough information in these reports to help in the future. 99.9% of these events could be avoided and 99.9% of these devices are safe.

  9. Reed Thompson says:

    What happens when damaged lithium batteries, water and idiots mix…..

  10. Bryan Morris says:

    Murder? No. Darwin Award? Yes.

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