15-year-old boy dies while zip lining

A 15-year-old boy has died in a zip line accident near Payson this past weekend.

Investigators say the teen was from the valley and a Boy Scouts of America executive has identified him as Antonio Flores, who goes by Tony.

Scout executive Larry Abbott says nine Boy Scouts from Troop 737 out of Queen Creek were staying the night at a private cabin in the Forest Lakes community as part of a unit activity.  They were going to be sledding and taking a compass course.

Abbott says around 10:30 a.m. Saturday, they headed out to zip line.  He says the adults went inside to get the safety gear and some of the boys decided to go down the zip line anyway.

"The leader who was preparing the zip line told the boys to hold on.  He went inside to obtain the safety equipment which included the bungee cords for breaking system and also the safety helmets," explained Abbott.  "I guess four of the guys decided they were just going to go down.. when he went down, he struck a tree at the end of the zip line and one of the boys ran inside to get an adult leader.. one of the boys went to aid Tony."

Investigators say Flores had head trauma.  Flores was taken to a hospital in Payson where he later died.

Coconino County Sheriff's detectives and the Gila County medical examiner will continue this investigation.

Some on social media are identifying the teen as the son of a Mesa police officer.  We've reached out to Mesa police, and the department says they are commenting on the matter.
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