BELL COUNTY, KY. – Local news reports on Oct. 17, about a man working at the Middlesboro Smithfield Foods processing plant dying following an accident at the facility were confirmed by the company.

Bell County Deputy Coroner Jason Steele stated that Mark Allen Tapp, 61, was working on a machine when a garment he was wearing got too close and he was pulled into the machine and killed.

Officials said his body was sent to Frankfort, Ky., for an autopsy.

Jim Monroe, Smithfield’s vice president of corporate affairs noted that the plant was closed yesterday after the accident and will be closed Oct. 18. 

“We are deeply saddened to confirm the loss of a team member following a tragic accident at our Middlesboro, Ky., facility today,” Smithfield said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of our co-worker. We are grateful to emergency personnel for their rapid response and will support a full investigation of the matter.”