Oklahoma Man Dies After Being Bitten Twice by Timber Rattlesnake

Moving a rattler from the road cost this 57-year-old man his life.

Barry Lester, a 57-year-old resident of Green Country, died April 28 after being bitten twice by a rattlesnake.

While driving in Osage County with his wife, on route to Keystone Lake to celebrate his birthday, Lester stopped their vehicle to move a rattlesnake he spotted crossing the road.

The timber rattlesnake bit the man once on each hand, after which Lester wrestled the snake into the toolbox of his truck and called for help.

The plan was to meet an ambulance at their home but it was too late. Attempts to revive Lester, both in the ambulance and at the hospital, were unsuccessful.

Doctors have attributed the death to a combination of the venom and an underlying heart condition.

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Although deaths caused by snake bites are extremely rare, somewhere between 7,000 to 8,000 people suffer from venomous snake bites on an annual basis. Approximately five people die each year.

Wildlife officials attribute the most fatal bites to the eastern and western diamondback rattlesnakes.

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