Explosion victims’ family: ‘We have to thank God’

Muskegon County

EGLESTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Family members of the father and son injured when their home exploded Tuesday afternoon say they’re focused more on what they still have rather than what they lost.

Brandon and Riley Stock, a father and his 17-year-old son, were in the basement of their home on Barnes Road, east of Evanston Avenue when an explosion leveled the house and set it on fire. Family and friends confirmed the victims’ identities to News 8 Tuesday.

Both victims were badly burned and said to be in critical but stable condition as of late Tuesday afternoon. They were expected to survive their injuries, officials said on scene.

“It’s awful,” Sandra Blamer, the victims’ aunt told News 8 as her voice filled with emotion. “Their clothes were burned off them and my brother-in-law said they looked awful.”

The victims were initially taken to a Muskegon-area hospital for treatment, but both have been transferred to Spectrum Health hospitals in Grand Rapids, their family said.

The home is a total loss. Only the garage remained standing when firefighters cleared the scene. 

Fire officials said it wasn’t immediately clear what caused the blast, though an investigation into the incident continues.

Shortly before the blast, Blamer and other neighbors said a company delivered propane to the home. Firefighters said they didn’t yet know if that had anything to do with the explosion.

Blamer lives nearby and said she heard the explosion herself, not knowing how close to her its impact would end up.

“A big explosion — sounded like a bomb went off,” Blamer said. 

The family is grateful that no one else was home. Among those who lived in the house was a young woman who is pregnant.

It will take time to for the victims to recover from their injuries and the family to rebuild all that was lost, but the fact that the victims survived gives their loved ones a reason to be grateful. 

“We have to thank God,” Blamer said. “That stuff all can be replaced.”

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