Steelers Update Coach's Condition, Determination of Fire's Cause On the Way
Steelers officials say running backs Coach Kirby Wilson remains in critical condition after being burned on over 45 percent of his body in a fire earlier this month at his home.
The Steelers organization on Tuesday released an update on running backs Coach Kirby Wilson’s condition on behalf of the coach's family.
The 50-year-old coach was severely burned Jan. 6 when an early-morning fire broke out in his townhouse on Jameson Way in Seven Fields.
He was flown by medical helicopter to UPMC Mercy in Pittsburgh, where he remains in critical condition at the hospital's Trauma Burn Center.
"In addition to burns sustained over 45 percent of his body, he has suffered a smoke inhalation injury and will require multiple operative procedures in the future," the Steelers statement said.
An answer to what caused the fire at Wilson’s home also may soon be on the way.
Fire Marshal Luke Nelson of the state police barracks in Butler confirmed the fire started in Wilson’s kitchen. Investigators, however, have been delayed in determining an official cause for the fire because they been unable to speak with Wilson.
“A lot rides on that,” Nelson said. “We have some questions that weren’t readily apparent by just looking at the scene. There was a lot of damage.”
Nelson said he hopes to be able to speak soon with Wilson. He added the fire has been ruled accidental.
“Nothing about the fire is suspicious. Everything appears accidental,” he said. “It’s just a matter of what the accident was.”
Neighbors who were able to rouse Wilson from his burning home by repeatedly banging on the door said the coach had burns on his legs, arms and the top of his head. He also was wheezing from smoke inhalation when he answered the door.
A father of five, Wilson joined the Steelers in 2007 after spending 19 years as a college and professional coach, according to his official team biography. He previously coached running backs for the Arizona Cardinals (2004-06) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2002-03), where he also worked with Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin.
This article first appeared on Cranberry Patch.