Man Dies at Hank Jr. Concert After Horseplay Goes Wrong

Victim's son doesn't blame teen who allegedly pushed him

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 21, 2014 12:21 PM CDT

(Newser) – Robert Kobe, 55, was enjoying a Hank Williams Jr. concert with a friend and the friend's 15-year-old son Sunday night when something went terribly wrong. The teen allegedly shoved Kobe, who fell and hit his head on concrete at the theater 40 miles outside Detroit; the Michigan man died yesterday, the Detroit Free Press reports. But Kobe's son says he suspects there was "no malicious intent" in the push, and says his horseplay-loving father might even have provoked the family friend. "It was an accident," he tells WJBK. "They were horsing around, he tripped and hit his head."

"Did you ever have an uncle who picks on you but doesn’t mean to hurt you? That was my father," he says. "My father was double this kid’s size. There’s no way that kid’s just going to come up and clock my dad." Investigators so far seem to be telling the same story, with the sheriff saying earlier this week that the two were apparently engaged in "kind of a shoving altercation," and that Kobe may have started it, CBS Detroit reports. The teen fled the scene, but that was probably because he was "terrified" after seeing blood pooling around Kobe, the son says, adding, "I want to make sure that this young man gets fair treatment." Bystanders stopped the teen, who spent Sunday night in a juvenile detention facility; he was released Monday, and charges are possible, Michigan Live reports.

Hank Williams Jr .performs at Jam in the Valley in Varysburg, NY, on Friday, July 4, 2014.
Hank Williams Jr .performs at Jam in the Valley in Varysburg, NY, on Friday, July 4, 2014.   (AP Photo/Buffalo News, Harry Scull Jr.)
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