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Man Dies During Taco-Eating Contest

'He was just shoving the tacos down his mouth without chewing,' witness says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 15, 2019 12:55 AM CDT
Updated Aug 18, 2019 10:23 AM CDT
Fans arrive at Chukchansi Park in Fresno, Calif., for a minor-league baseball game between the Fresno Grizzlies and the Round Rock Express.   (Eric Paul Zamora/The Fresno Bee via AP)
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(Newser) – Taco Tuesday ended in tragedy at a minor league baseball game in California. A man taking part in a taco-eating contest at a Fresno Grizzlies game collapsed seven minutes into the competition and was pronounced dead at a local hospital. The coroner's office says 41-year-old Dana Hutchings apparently choked to death. Grizzlies fan Matthew Boylan tells the Fresno Bee that Hutchings stood out because "he was eating so fast compared to the other two."

"It was like he'd never eaten before," Boylan says. "He was just shoving the tacos down his mouth without chewing." Fresno Grizzlies spokesman Paul Braverman says the team was "devastated" to hear of the death, the AP reports. The team says the World Taco Eating Championship, scheduled to take place during the annual Taco Truck Throwdown Saturday, has been called off. (Last year, an ex-boxer died in a croissant-eating contest.)

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