December 30th, 2009
05:06 PM ET

'MythBusters' regular Erik Gates dead

Erik Gates, who contributed to the popular Discovery Channel show "MythBusters" as its "Amateur Rocket Expert," has died. He was 47.

According to media reports, Gates died in a freak accident. He was at a building in Newbury Park, California, doing electrical work on a roof, when he fell 30 feet from a skylight. He died December 20.

Gates was an owner of Gateco Electric, which was employed at the site.

On its Twitter page, "MythBusters" tweeted, "Team MB wishes to express our deepest sympathies on the passing of our beloved rocket expert, Erik," followed by "You were an honorary MythBuster and will be sorely missed."

Gates and his brother also ran Gates Brothers Rocketry.


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  10. may loc nuoc

    I guess these guys know the risks going into the business and are willing to take that chance in the name of entertainment. My heart goes out to his family and friends and the Myth Busters crew. Take some time to remember the dangers that our hard working trades members face everyday. My condolences to his family and to the Mythbusters family.a skylight hole should have been covered to prevent anyone from falling through it. This is a standard OSHA requirement and a major violation. Prayers for his surviving friends and family. What a shame that the accident happened. Sorry to hear anyone connected to it has been hurt. Wizard either never dreamed of or never dared to attempt. I just started to watch the show. I did not see this weeks but have it on iTunes maybe they already have dedicated it. Even worse was when Ashton K used text abbreviations. i have seen every show and more than once. Just a bad accident at what should have been a happy time of year. May they receive comfort in their time of mourning. Prayers to your loved ones may they be comforted. The only time I was injured was when I was not careful. This is why safety is so important. My sincere condolences go out to his family and friends. His presence will be greatly missed on many launch fields. My heartfelt condolences for his family. I along with many other rocketeers will be flying a rocket in his name this year. Nowhere does it say his death was as a result of his work on MythBusters. That stands for something these days. The CNN headline is deliberatively deceptive. Whether his accident was related to the show or not is not important. What is important is him and what he contributed to its success to the show and his family. They take extreme safety measures that you are not aware of. Incidents like this are the most painful kind of reminders of just how frail we are and how easy it is for one mistake to cause the worst. If only we could turn back time and protect ourselves from accidents. This news has been out for a long time now. It should not make up for a sympathy card. I feel for his friends and family. I was very sad to hear this unfortunate news. THANK YOU for all the wonderful memories. He will be missed by all the mb fans. Lighten up on your need for manners or a explanation of what he was doing and for whom. The other stuff falls by the wayside at times like this. they just make up stupid stories and pretend they are actually contributing something to science. Hopefully now they will be charged with criminal charges and pay the price for their gross ignorance. He will need to find a new partner. The work these men and women do in thier daily jobs is fraut with danger and i thank them for thier contibutions to our lives. It is easy to forget when you flip a lightswitch of all the people who work hard and risk their lives to make that light glow. Although almost as sad is that his friends and part time employer found it appropriate to tweet their condolences. Enjoyed very much his part on the show. And it just goes to show that life is too short. He inspired me and will be greatly missed. A most tragic accident indeed for such an inspiring person with major American entrepreneurial spirit. He was alive and talking on the scene after the incident and later died at the hospital from blunt force chest injuries. I am going to go out on a limb and guess that Ashton and the MB crew gave their personal condolences to the families at the funeral or over the phone. They used Twitter to let the larger population know what they were thinking.While I am not a fan of twittering or communicating thru web profiles. Same as people leaving condolences here.we should all cherish every moment we have on the Earth with our loved ones. DID YOU SEND ANYTHING PHYSICAL to the family. I as everyone else here has many friends that do construction. Makes us realize how dangerous it really is. GOD BLESS YOU DURING YOUR TIME OF GRIEF. Fred commented that Erik fell through a skylight hole. There is a push by an ASTM Work Group to pass a standard that will require the skylight materials to be resistant to breakage by human body impact. He always approached the task as a problem solver and as a mediator. My prayers go out to his family. I posted a note on line and called other members of the family.This is my may loc nuoc

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  19. mOlly

    Wow i feel so bad

    January 1, 2010 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
  20. webmistress27

    oh wow thats so sad to hear I loved their show

    January 1, 2010 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
  21. Donny C.

    Mythbusters is my absolute favorite show and the rocket episodes were always my faves because i am also interested in and do amateur rocketry, my condolences and heart go out to Eriks family and MB and everyone connected to him in any way.

    January 1, 2010 at 9:08 am | Report abuse |
  22. Eric

    I worked for his brother, Dirk, and am sorry to hear about the loss. My condolences to his family and friends.

    January 1, 2010 at 1:59 am | Report abuse |
  23. Stephen Daedalus

    He was there for the first episode, and so many others. Even putting that aside, 47 is too damned young, and that accident was freakish. Requiem In Terra Pacis.

    December 31, 2009 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Samantha Clemens

    Wow, so young.

    December 31, 2009 at 2:49 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Ohio Paul

    Sorry to hear about Erik. My prayers go out to his family.

    To the haters out there. Don't judge, lest you be judged.

    If it's wrong to send a text, e-mail or twitter, then why do all of the Funeral Home web sites have options to leave a message for the loved ones? If it is in such poor taste, why do they offer it?

    My cousin and friend died last year, the day before a major ice storm hit Kentucky. I couldn't make it. I posted a note on line and called other members of the family. At least the technologies were there for me to offer my condolences, since the highways were closed due to the storm. Would have being there been better? Of course. BUT I COULDN't.

    December 31, 2009 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Sakura-chan

    I'm so sorry for the loss! My thoughts are with Erik's family and the mythbusters. What a terrible way to go!

    December 31, 2009 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Kevin Baxter

    Erik and I worked together on about a half a dozen MythBusters episodes as well as several for Masterblasters. He always approached the task as a problem solver and as a mediator. There are not so many great gentlemen in the rocketry, explosives, or entertainment business and he will be missed.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Thom West Virginia

    This comment is coming from a Safety Engineer who is trying to prevent workers from being injured or killed from falling from elevated work places. Fred commented that Erik fell through a skylight hole. No, it was an actual skylight fixture. The mistaken assumption is that skylight materials (plastic or glass) are just as strong as the roof they are walking on, and they are not. Unfortunately, 20 to 25 workers are killed every year from falls through existing skylights. There are metal covers that can be installed after the fact that will prevent people from directly contacting the skylight, but that costs extra money and takes time to install. The attitude of many is that there are tens of thousands of skylights installed every year, with hundreds of thousands (or even millions) in existence on active work sites - so 20 or 25 fatalities is a really tiny percentage that can be lived with - except for the 20 or 25 families that are tragically affected every year. There is a push by an ASTM Work Group to pass a standard that will require the skylight materials to be resistant to breakage by human body impact. Thus far, the proposed standard has not been approved because of the probable increase in cost of the skylight fixtures.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Leprakawn

    @Whatever, Baeleth:

    Your final statement hits the mark for me; agreed 110%.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Renee' Bullock

    I HAVE LOST MY BROTHER, UNCLE, COUSIN AND NOW SOMEONE I ENJOYED WATCHING ON T.V. GOD BLESS YOU DURING YOUR TIME OF GRIEF.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:15 pm | Report abuse |
  31. a-frame on wheels

    Rocketman, and I think it's going to be a long, long time...

    My condolences to Erik's family. Such a loss to so many.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  32. greenman

    I have to agree, twittering ones grief is poor at best.

    December 31, 2009 at 11:42 am | Report abuse |
  33. Roger Smith

    One of the previous comments referred to the "dangers involved in rocketry." Actually, hobbyist rocketry has an incredible safety record – in part because of the work of people like Erik Gates. Erik served on the Board of Directors of the Tripoli Rocketry Association and, through his involvment with 'MythBusters' and other endeavours was considered the "Ambassador of Rocketry." All of us involved in rocketry are devastated by this tragedy. Our hearts are with Erik's family and friends.

    December 31, 2009 at 11:42 am | Report abuse |
  34. dan

    um, you idiots that are nocking twitter.

    What the hell is the difference of you giving your condolences here and twitter?

    Did you send flowers?
    Did you send a card to the family?

    Come on you hypocrits, answer the question. DID YOU SEND ANYTHING PHYSICAL to the family.

    If not.

    STFU.

    And I am sorry about the loss. I as everyone else here has many friends that do construction. Makes us realize how dangerous it really is.

    December 31, 2009 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  35. Debra R

    Pixie: It sure seems like the water is tainted. But Erik, died due to an accident, Patrick had cancer, the autopsy is out on what killed Brittany and Rev, and Michael Jackson was basically murdered by doctor administed OD.... celebs are just like us, it's how they LIVED that makes the difference....we should all cherish every moment we have on the Earth with our loved ones...

    December 31, 2009 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
  36. Chasaty

    Thats sad

    December 31, 2009 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
  37. David

    On the Gates Brothers Rocketry web site it says that Erik was an avid skydiver and BASE jumper with over 600 jumps. What an ironic tragedy that he was killed in a fall from/through a skylight.

    I have been involved with the investigation of several fatal falls through roof penetrations and this is a grim reminder of the importance of standard safety equipment, as inconvenient as it may be.

    My sincere condolences to his wife, three children, brother Dirk and the rest of his family and loved ones. I sense from the pictures on the rocketry web site that they were a fun and close knit family and I'm sure that he will be missed beyond description.

    December 31, 2009 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
  38. Pixie

    Is there something in the water in America because it seems everyone is dying!!!
    *Britney Murphy
    *Micheal Jackson
    *"The Rev"
    *Patrick Swayze
    *Erik Gates
    and im sure theres much more!!!

    December 31, 2009 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
  39. Kevin Harkness

    Sincerely sorry to hear of the passing of Erik he will be surely missed.
    On behalf of us here in Australia our sympathies to his family

    Kevin & Sandra Harkness
    Wollongong New South Wales Australia

    December 31, 2009 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
  40. Jill

    (MANNERS) Welcome to 2010, Twitter, Facebook, etc is exactly how a lot of people communicate today, to include passing on condolences. Same as people leaving condolences here.

    My prayers to his family, for peace.

    December 31, 2009 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
  41. justin

    Who cares if someone offers condolences via twitter? Its about equally as stupid as yelling at them for it over twitter. Jeez, people always want to cry about something.

    December 31, 2009 at 10:05 am | Report abuse |
  42. Hoth

    Gravity is not just a good idea, its the law!

    December 31, 2009 at 9:57 am | Report abuse |
  43. leme

    Erik passed away December 20th and this is reported today?

    December 31, 2009 at 9:52 am | Report abuse |
  44. Bruce

    Well, at least he wasn't holding a rope connected to a barrel of bricks...

    December 31, 2009 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
  45. Tom, St Paul, MN

    Please respect the solemnity of this occaision and don't mock the genuine sentiments offered here whether you agree with their premise or not.

    My condolences to Erik's family.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  46. Joe

    Twittering condolences is the height of laziness...While I am not a fan of twittering or communicating thru web profiles. it does have its place. with that said, however ,sending condolencesnces thru twitter shows that you won't take the time to actually call the family, send a card, or fnd out how to cotact them etc....Before twitter , email, facebook, etc, people didn't have a problem communicating in a more personal manner...suddenly, half of society finds it physically hard to do. I read a column recently about a young teacher who felt it was "too much work" to send thank you notes to the parents of the children who gave her christmas presents and wanted to twitter them instead..sad .

    December 31, 2009 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
  47. John

    Erik was an asshole on all the shows he was on, not just MB. Anyone see Erik on 'Master Blasters'? He was a prick to the other people on the show.

    Hate to see anyone die though.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:38 am | Report abuse |
  48. Chris

    People – A couple things about Twitter

    1. There are character limits. Ashton's hit 128 characters, and it has a 130 character limit. He did what he could.

    2. Twitter is where people share their thoughts, feelings & insights

    3. I am going to go out on a limb and guess that Ashton and the MB crew gave their personal condolences to the families at the funeral or over the phone. They used Twitter to let the larger population know what they were thinking.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  49. Jodi

    This saddens me, as Erik and his family are so terrific and he brought so much to the show. He will truely be missed. His family and show are in our prayers.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
  50. drummerjoe

    Deceptive headline.

    And this happened 11 days ago. Way to be on the ball, CNN.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
  51. Al Arias

    Eric Gates was a boss dude. My heart goes out to his family and friends and the Myth Busters crew.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
  52. Jay

    Wow! What a bummer!! MB is a great TV show, and Erik really knew his stuff. Sad sad Panda

    December 31, 2009 at 9:29 am | Report abuse |
  53. thorrome

    what a dumbass!!!!!!!!

    December 31, 2009 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
  54. Bill

    What no one has mentioned so far is that all those downplaying using twitter and the like are actually posting thier sympathies in a blog. DUH!

    Yes, I agree it's not very personal, but for some it's the only way they can express their feelings and the way everything is today, that says a lot. No, I'm not a kid, far from it. I've been around technology long before the internet is what it is today. Anyone remember ARPANET, it's what we used at college (Berkley and MIT) to talk to other colleges and is what the Internet was and still is modelled after.

    In any case and certainly not wanting to take away from this sad time for the family and MB, I will once again express my condolences in the only way I can since I live 2000 miles or more away but enjoyed the episodes that Erik was on just as much as any other episode

    I have yet to watch this last episode. I missed it on Monday but I do have all 7 seasons downloaded from iTunes and can't wait until season eight begins. I hope Apple (iTunes) included the tribute at the end. Typically the iTunes versions are cut a bit short at the end

    December 31, 2009 at 9:11 am | Report abuse |
  55. Ricky

    --Quoted from the link "According to media reports..."--

    “We will not be opening an investigation because of lack of jurisdiction,” Cal/OSHA spokesman Dean Fryer said.

    For Cal/OSHA to launch an investigation, there must be an employee relationship between the worker and his employer. Because Gates is the company’s owner, there is no employee relationship, and thus Cal/OSHA does not have jurisdiction to investigate.

    ---------------------------

    Nobody knows exactly how he fell through the skylight. He was alive and talking on the scene after the incident and later died at the hospital from blunt force chest injuries.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
  56. syam tunuguntla

    so sorry to hear this.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:05 am | Report abuse |
  57. Dana

    Hats off to the blue collar workers of this country who keep things going day to day. Even if you do everything right, something can go wrong. God Bless and keep you!

    Rest in peace Erik. Prayers for him, his family & friends.

    December 31, 2009 at 9:04 am | Report abuse |
  58. Mars Museum

    It is sad to hear this news about Eric. He inspired me and will be greatly missed. My condolences go out to his family. A most tragic accident indeed for such an inspiring person with major American entrepreneurial spirit. Rest in peace Eric and may your spirit live on in your family, friends and others who share your passions. Alan

    December 31, 2009 at 8:50 am | Report abuse |
  59. bill

    Rest in peace

    so they got a opening now, time to go to te hobby store and make a model rockets again

    December 31, 2009 at 8:45 am | Report abuse |
  60. OriginalMFer

    My kingdom for a safety line... It was not the fall that killed him, it was carelessness and the impact.

    December 31, 2009 at 8:44 am | Report abuse |
  61. Jennifer

    I have to argee when you're Ashton and use twitter to send ur condolences, instead of just...oh i don't know...GOING to the funeral!!! It shows that you don't care two cents about the person. I am sorry to hear about Brittany passing, she was close to my age. And it just goes to show that life is too short. I'm a fan of the show, I send the Gates family my prayers.

    December 31, 2009 at 8:44 am | Report abuse |
  62. bill

    maybe the dumb ass should have wore his safety harness and none of this would be needed

    December 31, 2009 at 8:37 am | Report abuse |
  63. munkyhsine

    My sympathies to his family and friends. He will be greatly missed.

    December 31, 2009 at 8:35 am | Report abuse |
  64. mythbusterlover

    that sucks well im not shure who he was but if he was part of mythbusters hes ok in my book and yes jamie and adam are so anal for that exact reason he was obviesly a profesional and accidents still happen for his sack i hope it was instant not a drawn out battle of pain

    December 31, 2009 at 8:29 am | Report abuse |
  65. liveymom

    wow....my heart goes out to the family... this is a really hard time and all we can offer is support!! hang in there... he will truly be missed!

    December 31, 2009 at 8:23 am | Report abuse |
  66. Jethro

    Death is no myth!!

    December 31, 2009 at 8:09 am | Report abuse |
  67. Debra R

    My sympathy to Erik's friends, family and co-workers. Mythbusters is a great show.

    December 31, 2009 at 7:54 am | Report abuse |
  68. bob

    ANAL about safety? what a dumb comment.

    December 31, 2009 at 7:51 am | Report abuse |
  69. akgreg907

    Just heard the news it is a shame ! I am will miss his contribution to the show. My heart sympathy to all of myth-buster family.

    December 31, 2009 at 7:51 am | Report abuse |
  70. Ogunka uche moore, from nigeria

    My sincerest condolences goes to erik's family & the MB team,he will missed by everyone who loved him more xspecially we in african,to be precise Nigerians.

    December 31, 2009 at 7:28 am | Report abuse |
  71. JRT

    My sincerest condolences go out to Erik's family and MythBusters.

    But im just as curious to ask why in the world would you talk a bout something that happened on twitter on a page about someones tragedy?! If youd like to talk about that, start instant messaging each other!!

    December 31, 2009 at 7:19 am | Report abuse |
  72. Andrew

    I went to Viewpoint Middle School with his sons, Evan and Eric. I still remember when Erik came and did a talk at our school and had helped out with the "rocket club" that my 8th grade science teacher started. I remember him being incredibly kind and I got quite excited when I first saw a mythbusters episode and nearly shouted "hey I've met him before!" Although sadly I never did go out to the desert to see the launch of the giant rockets the club built, I simply couldn't wake up that early, it would have been nice to see what Erik made his passion. I always thought Evan was one of the most brilliant people I had ever met, he was a grade above mine and seemed to posses an almost mystical amount of knowledge.
    My brother (who was in Eric's grade) tells me he believes they have already also lost their mother and I really can't fathom the pain they must be going through. My heart goes out to them and I hope they can get through this. They're both smart and talented individuals and no one deserves to lose a parent like this, I send my deepest condolences.

    December 31, 2009 at 7:00 am | Report abuse |
  73. Richard

    Sad day for all of us... Enjoyed very much his part on the show.

    December 31, 2009 at 6:17 am | Report abuse |
  74. guardrail

    I am very sorry to hear about this man's tragic death. Although almost as sad is that his friends and part time employer found it appropriate to tweet their condolences. Has America gone completely mad? Technology is very often a good thing but often it seems, as in this case, it is used at the expense of good taste and good manners.

    December 31, 2009 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |
  75. mark boutilier

    WHATS a MYTH BUSTER . and how does it relate to the rest of the story

    December 31, 2009 at 5:59 am | Report abuse |
  76. Toni toni

    Can you fall off a roof and be ok?
    MYTHBUSTED!

    December 31, 2009 at 5:15 am | Report abuse |
  77. Sam

    My condolences to his family. The work these men and women do in thier daily jobs is fraut with danger and i thank them for thier contibutions to our lives. It is easy to forget when you flip a lightswitch of all the people who work hard and risk their lives to make that light glow.
    As for CNN and thier constant attempts to upgrade the headlines to give the story more pizazz, you are asymbol of everythign that is wrong with american media. One baby step above fox.

    December 31, 2009 at 4:31 am | Report abuse |
  78. chris

    wasn't familiar with his work, but just went to their website and was blown away. Totally kick ass. will be sorely missed

    December 31, 2009 at 4:05 am | Report abuse |
  79. Steven Holloway

    mannera and fff , would have been nice of you to call me and let meknow that you did not appreciate the twitter condolences offered tho this mans family.it disturbed me to have to find out you did not like it on CNN"S comment board.

    December 31, 2009 at 3:50 am | Report abuse |
  80. daniel2828

    While very sad, he was hardly what I would call a regular. He was on from 2003 to 2005, about 3 times. i really don't see the connection in the overall scheme of things.

    December 31, 2009 at 3:49 am | Report abuse |
  81. Zia A

    Sorry to hear that... MB was one of my fav shows in discovery !!! He was such a smart and talented guy...

    My sincerest regards to his family...

    December 31, 2009 at 3:40 am | Report abuse |
  82. Stacey Michelley

    Such sad news my condolences to the family. As a work comp manager, I can only stress the importance of safety first. He should of had on a safety harness , I suppose now OSHA will do a full investigation.

    December 31, 2009 at 3:34 am | Report abuse |
  83. Scott A

    December 30th, 2009 6:24 pm ET

    I love that show. Sorry to hear anyone connected to it has been hurt.
    As I child, I loved "Watch Mr. Wizard." MB takes it to a new, fascinating level Mr. Wizard either never dreamed of or never dared to attempt.
    =============================================

    Or more accurately, didn't have anywhere near the budget to attempt. Mythbusters spends a lot of money to provide those top-notch and exciting experiments.

    My condolences to Erik's family and friends. While he wasn't a regular on Mythbusters like the headline inaccurately states, he was a contributing member and was very memorable for the work he did on the shows that he was a part of. Great work Erik – rest in peace.

    December 31, 2009 at 3:08 am | Report abuse |
  84. Heather

    Man, my stomach went into knots when I first read the headline. I don't really know all those guys' names, but I sure know their faces and would've been heart sick if someone had been lost on the show. Still, sad enough to lose someone associated with the show. RIP Erik.

    December 31, 2009 at 3:04 am | Report abuse |
  85. M

    Tragic.

    Jamie, anal about safety? I don't think so. They don't even use regulators on their compressed gas cylinders, and that's common sense.

    December 31, 2009 at 3:03 am | Report abuse |
  86. S

    Why wasn't he tied off? I think OSHA will be involved in this one

    December 31, 2009 at 2:51 am | Report abuse |
  87. Wazirion

    I love the show and all that contribute to its production, So sorry for the death of one of the team, my condolences to his family and the entire MB family.

    December 31, 2009 at 2:48 am | Report abuse |
  88. Toni B.

    Erik brought so much joy to science. Mythbusters is the only show we watch as a family (I have kids that are 7 and 15). So sad... may he rest in peace.

    December 31, 2009 at 2:47 am | Report abuse |
  89. doota

    build explosive rockets, yet killed by a skylight. how sad and tragic.

    December 31, 2009 at 2:47 am | Report abuse |
  90. Rod

    My prayers are with his family and friends.

    December 31, 2009 at 2:30 am | Report abuse |
  91. Jaime

    Well I guess the guy with the walrus mustache is the only one left then. He will need to find a new partner.

    December 31, 2009 at 2:10 am | Report abuse |
  92. Max Power

    sucks to see someone had to die for the sake of their stupid show... the Myth Busters do not even take on 'real' "MYTHS"... they just make up stupid stories and pretend they are actually contributing something to science.... now, their lack of knowledge has cost someone a life. Very sad... It should have been the 'hosts' of the 'SHOW'. Hopefully now they will be charged with criminal charges and pay the price for their gross ignorance.

    December 31, 2009 at 2:08 am | Report abuse |
  93. woodduck

    Who cares what he was doing whe it happened, he died. Would it be any easier for any of you if a loved one of yours died doing something fun or working on their regular job? and who cares how you learned of it? Any less tragic? Jeez, people, someone died here. A family is grieving. Lighten up on your need for manners or a explanation of what he was doing and for whom. Again, loved ones are grieving. The other stuff falls by the wayside at times like this. . . .

    December 31, 2009 at 2:05 am | Report abuse |
  94. Captain

    This is sad especially at this time of the year and the following years will bring back the sadness. Condolences to the family.

    This should be a reminder to all trades to follow the safety rules such as wearing a "fall arrest" harness and restraints which are required when on roofs and other heights.

    December 31, 2009 at 1:48 am | Report abuse |
  95. uspastime

    Father33,
    You hit it right on the head.
    And with this Twitter era, now nerds no longer have to worry about the disappointment with human interaction. Write the family a personal note, for crissakes.

    December 31, 2009 at 1:46 am | Report abuse |
  96. NATE

    My heart goes out to all the mb crew and personal family and friends of Mr. Gates. I was very sad to hear this unfortunate news. THANK YOU for all the wonderful memories. He will be missed by all the mb fans. May he rest in peace.

    December 31, 2009 at 1:34 am | Report abuse |
  97. Tim

    Any Openings ?

    December 31, 2009 at 1:32 am | Report abuse |
  98. Paramvir Singh

    May he always rest in peace and in our hearts.

    December 31, 2009 at 1:19 am | Report abuse |
  99. Carl from MI

    His rockets were so awesome... he will be sorely missed!!

    December 31, 2009 at 1:18 am | Report abuse |
  100. jj

    Gravity is just a theory.

    December 31, 2009 at 1:11 am | Report abuse |
  101. rachele

    Right on, manners! It really is tasteless to text expressions of sympathy. It really is a sad story. I feel for his friends and family.

    December 31, 2009 at 1:11 am | Report abuse |
  102. Yepez & Sons landscape

    Our sincere condolences to Erik's fam

    We love you all.

    Take care,from all the staff @ yepez & sons landscape,..........in

    victorville,ca

    December 31, 2009 at 1:01 am | Report abuse |
  103. frogbutt

    @father33 HAHAHAHAH! nice!

    December 31, 2009 at 12:46 am | Report abuse |
  104. JKale

    To Manners:

    I'm sure those close to him used multiple outlets to express their condolences to his family.

    The only problem with using Twitter is...
    1. Not everyone uses Twitter and
    2. It should not make up for a sympathy card.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:45 am | Report abuse |
  105. james

    Mythbusters sucks. Who cares.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:36 am | Report abuse |
  106. Mike in San Antonio

    Sad indeed.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:29 am | Report abuse |
  107. Jeff

    mb: Excellent idea! An Erik Gates Memorial rocketry episode.

    If they address his death on the show, they need to remind people he died doing his day job. I have to wonder if Jamie will get even more "anal" about safety now.

    December 31, 2009 at 12:27 am | Report abuse |
  108. Mike Papadopoulos

    I hate that!! I love that show!!

    http://90recruitsin90days.com

    December 31, 2009 at 12:18 am | Report abuse |
  109. cpmuskie

    People who work these jobs take the risks and then people piss and moan about paying $125.00 per hour for them while they risk there lives while you sit at a desk.
    Amen Erik may God be with you!

    December 31, 2009 at 12:17 am | Report abuse |
  110. Matt

    Way to be late in posting the news CNN. This news has been out for a long time now. Anyways, RIP. He was a great person!

    December 31, 2009 at 12:03 am | Report abuse |
  111. Isaac

    If even half the people working in construction had some OSHA training, such as the OSHA 10 and OSHA 30 outreach programs, most lethal accidents would be avoided. I recently became an authorized trainer for these outreach programs, and can't wait to disseminate the knowledge. Most people don't realize the daily dangers my brothers and I in the construction field face. This one hits me especially hard being an electrician for the past 13 yrs.

    RIP fellow wire twister...

    December 30, 2009 at 11:54 pm | Report abuse |
  112. Chris

    This is a sad sad loss for the family and the team. They are always so vigilant with the don't try this at home note and their attention to safety details when filming the shows. Incidents like this are the most painful kind of reminders of just how frail we are and how easy it is for one mistake to cause the worst. If only we could turn back time and protect ourselves from accidents.

    December 30, 2009 at 11:47 pm | Report abuse |
  113. Coyote

    John...... Gravity is only a Theory such as "Einstein's Theory of Gravity"

    December 30, 2009 at 11:33 pm | Report abuse |
  114. indynj

    The people on MythBusters do some very dangerous stuff for our edification and entertainment and all should be aware of it. They take extreme safety measures that you are not aware of. However, Erik died on his regular job in a way that could happen to any of us that work for a living. Safety should always be your highest priority, whatever you do for a living. Even when you work at home in your yard, garage, basement, etc., wear appropriate safety equipment and please; be careful.

    December 30, 2009 at 11:28 pm | Report abuse |
  115. Rocketeer

    manners, fff, and Whatever, Baeleth all took the time to scold us about what went wrong in sending condolences via electronic media so that anyone who reads it would know we cared enough to offer our thoughts or prayers, but no where did they themselves offer any type of thought to the loss of this human being. Instead they want to jump on a soap box about being without manners or etiquette?! Seriously you three, leave us to mourn and pray for our friend, fellow Rocketeer and sometimes TV persona the best we can by whatever means we want. I take great offense to your pitiful attacks on whatever form we as humans want to communicate 'anything' to 'anyone' at 'anytime' we wish.

    God speed Erik, and may you soar to the heavens beyond Mach speed.

    May Erk's family feel comfort in knowing heaven is gaining a great person.

    December 30, 2009 at 11:21 pm | Report abuse |
  116. LSynar

    My deepest condolences to Erik's family, the MB staff, crew and it's viewers. Like everyones' comments, he will be missed. His intregal importance to the show's success is not disputed here. I enjoy the program's premise and direction and hope that everyone will keep Erik's thought in line with the show's integrity. Whether his accident was related to the show or not is not important. What is important is him and what he contributed to its success to the show and his family. This is part of life that all of us must accept, sad to say. All of us will be better to help support his family and the show's continuance.
    Thanks,
    L

    December 30, 2009 at 11:18 pm | Report abuse |
  117. Chris

    I am very sorry this man died, but I have no memory of him on Mythbusters (just a vague memory of a rocket expert). The CNN headline is deliberatively deceptive. Being on 4 episodes out of 144 filmed does not make him a "regular".

    December 30, 2009 at 11:08 pm | Report abuse |
  118. Brandon

    My sincere condolences to MB and Erik's family. He will be missed.

    I agree that technology and sites make certain things more impersonal. But it's not relevant. As one of you said, Twitter was the medium used to inform a broader audience. I don't have their address, their phone#, or the time and money to drive over there and give my condolences. But I'm giving my condolences one way or another. That stands for something these days. Maybe it doesn't bode well with you, but I'm sure the family appreciates the thought that someone cares. #manners, If you want to hide behind a snide remark aimed at others here without any compassion towards the real situation, then I hope that you are finding a more personal way to send YOUR condolences. Else, you appear cold or a hypocrite.

    December 30, 2009 at 10:52 pm | Report abuse |
  119. father33

    well, now he can go on to test the biggest myth of all...

    December 30, 2009 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
  120. Ned

    I am sure a "better place" would be home with his family and friends who my deepest sympathy goes out to. better place,yeah right

    December 30, 2009 at 10:36 pm | Report abuse |
  121. yugant

    Rest in peace. You're in a better place.

    December 30, 2009 at 10:19 pm | Report abuse |
  122. Derek Anhorn

    I am sadden to hear of Erik's death I was mortified when I saw the headline about a regular Mythbuster dies! I was hoping it wasn't Jamie , Adam, Grant, Karry or Tory, the headline was misleading!

    December 30, 2009 at 10:14 pm | Report abuse |
  123. Paul

    Don't confuse the story. Nowhere does it say his death was as a result of his work on MythBusters.

    December 30, 2009 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
  124. Gavin

    Cal/OSHA can't investigate the accident because he was a co-owner of the business nobodies employee was injured.

    December 30, 2009 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
  125. Moby

    Um... read the article, Julie. He didn't in the name of entertainment. He died on his day job.

    December 30, 2009 at 9:53 pm | Report abuse |
  126. onuss333

    these guys are the best company (friends) on TV. So sorry to hear we lost one of the guys.

    December 30, 2009 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
  127. randy

    Erik was a friend and a fellow rocketeer. His presence will be greatly missed on many launch fields. My heartfelt condolences for his family. I wish I could have attended his memorial service on Saturday, but it was just too far to go. I along with many other rocketeers will be flying a rocket in his name this year.

    Thanks to the Mythbusters for doing the special tribute.

    RIP

    December 30, 2009 at 9:47 pm | Report abuse |
  128. CLA

    Erik spent a lifetime looking to the heavens and now looks to us from the stars. Rest in peace brother.

    December 30, 2009 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
  129. JPV

    Everyone seems to be commenting that participating in the show has inherent dangers, but that has nothing to do with the accident. Safety is a major issue on the show (and the fact that nobody has ever been seriously injured on the show is a testament to that) because many of the experiments involve highly dangerous circumstances, but Erik died while working on an electrical contract for a company completely unrelated to the show. That aside, condolences and deepest sympathies to Erik's family and friends

    December 30, 2009 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
  130. Barbara

    My sincerest gratitude to Erik for all he did for the show; my heartfelt sympathy for the Mythbusters crew and his family.

    RIP

    December 30, 2009 at 9:16 pm | Report abuse |
  131. mod

    manners/fff: as stated by others, the twitter, was likely not the only form of connection to erik's family by the MB crew, but instead a way to get the news of his passing to a wider audience.

    that said, i'm sure people who used to pay house calls said the same thing about postal-notes: "it is destroying personal connections..."... and at one point, a telegraph was the height of "gee, you're important" communication vehicles. then came the mass marketed and canned hallmark cards that carried about as much true sentiment as the painting you bought to match the sofa, but i digress.

    ironically, technology has enabled myself - and many others - to maintain *more* and *deeper* connections with people because of it's ubiquity, immediacy, and seamlessness. it's not done with a fountain pen, but the *content* is what's important to me, not the *media*... granted, that ubiquity has led to a lot of "junk-tweets", but i get a lot of robot calls and junk mail, too... so you can't blame the media for the content, either.

    personally, i'd rather receive one heart-felt or revealing facebook ping than ten crappy christmas card with a picture of your kids i've never met all dressed in santa hats.

    December 30, 2009 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  132. KCK

    Very sad. Never great when anybody dies before their time, but always worse when it happens around the holidays. My sincere condolences go out to his family and friends. I thoroughly enjoyed watching him on "Mythbusters."

    December 30, 2009 at 8:56 pm | Report abuse |
  133. Indi

    's sad, the rocket scientist makes thing a bit more interesting

    my sympathies to his family and friends, rest in Peace, Mr. Erik

    December 30, 2009 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  134. solo

    its a pity, he such a great guy, may God console his Family

    December 30, 2009 at 8:52 pm | Report abuse |
  135. Mark Bundick

    Eric was a well known and highly respected sport rocket flier who, with his brother Dirk, crafted beautiful models with excellent performance. He was a constant presence at large regional and national launches, and completely unselfish in sharing his time, techniques and skills.

    Relative to the specifics of his accident, the building at which he was working was that of his and his brother's business. He was not considered an employee, so to the best of my understanding, a CALOSHA investigation is not required under law.

    In all respects, this is a tragedy, particularly for those of us involved in sport rocketry.

    Mark B. Bundick
    Past President
    National Association of Rocketry

    December 30, 2009 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  136. Jon K.

    Actually, Fred, CALOSHA has already said they have no jurisdiction in this case because there was no "employee-employer" relationship – Erik was an owner, if not the owner, of Gateco, and thus not an employee.

    Strange, isn't it?

    December 30, 2009 at 8:43 pm | Report abuse |
  137. DGD

    Manners and fff, a little more info may help.

    Monday's MythBusters episode had a little extra: Grant Imahara was live-tweeting during the episode (once during the 9PM ET showing, and once during the 9PM PT showing).

    At the end of the credits from the episode, a screen shot of Erik and the Mythbusters was shown with a tribute (in memory of, or something to that effect).

    As there may have been questions from the Tweeters as who Erik was, Mythbusters Twitter account added a brief tribute identifying Erik as both a rocket expert, and an Honorary Mythbuster.

    As a supplement to the on-screen display of sympathy, the Twitter announcements are more than acceptable manners, IMHO.

    December 30, 2009 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
  138. joe m. g.

    To Baeleth: From Joe m. g. RE: Manners- I could not have said it any better.GOOD JOB!!!!! My heart and prayers go out to Eriks family once again -OVER THE TWITTER-–

    December 30, 2009 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  139. David

    I worked construction for 15 years. The only time I was injured was when I was not careful. This is why safety is so important.

    December 30, 2009 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
  140. Beldar

    Rest in peace rocket man. Prayers to your loved ones may they be comforted.

    December 30, 2009 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  141. SW

    That explains the "In Memory" spot at the end of this week's show. How incredibly sad. My condolences to his family and to the MB family as well.

    December 30, 2009 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
  142. Whatever, Baeleth

    Sending condolences via twitter is like proposing to your girlfriend via an answering machine message – "manners" is 100% right.

    Every step we take forward in technology is sometimes accompanied by a step backward in common human respect.

    December 30, 2009 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
  143. Sad

    fff/Manners – you may not think that it is appropriate to express condolences with Twitter, Facebook, etc, but appartently other disagree. It is absurd that you think your opinion on the appropriateness of someone else's expression of condolences is relevant.

    I just thought my condolences... was that not appropriate? Jeez... I hope you sent the man's family flowers, because buying a useless plants is somehow "appropriate.

    December 30, 2009 at 8:22 pm | Report abuse |
  144. joe m. g.

    To Tajkj: from Joe m.g. RE: Manners--THANK YOU!!!!!

    December 30, 2009 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  145. MBFan

    My Sincerest Condoloances to Erik's Family, secondly to the MB Team, You will be sorely missed Erik!

    December 30, 2009 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  146. fff

    I agree with manners.

    Txting, tweeting, they destroy the personal touches of life

    December 30, 2009 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
  147. Michael

    God bless Erik Gates family. May they receive comfort in their time of mourning.

    December 30, 2009 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  148. tajkj

    Manners, if you don't like the responses on twitter then don't read them...try putting your name to work and using some "manners". It's nice to see people commenting and offering positive messages in response to tragedy.
    My condolences to the family and to the MB family.

    December 30, 2009 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  149. kati

    RIP Erik Gates
    be at peace

    December 30, 2009 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
  150. Marian

    Leaves me feeling sad for everyone, his family, friends and the MB cast and crew. Nobody should die that young... Rest in Peace

    December 30, 2009 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
  151. OregonBowGuy

    How is it that every year folks working around skylights fall through and are tragically killed? Can't they engineer a skylight to have some sort of catch basket...or other safety device. I know, he should have had a safety harness..but still, what a loss.

    December 30, 2009 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
  152. mb

    Who cares what Ashton "no talent" twitters? Maybe they can do a rocket episode in his honor?

    December 30, 2009 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
  153. joe m. g.

    i watch mb all the time. i have seen every show and more than once.my heart and prayers go out to Eriks family, friends and the MB crew.Jamie is formost with safety. Just a bad accident at what should have been a happy time of year.

    December 30, 2009 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse |
  154. Jesse

    Very sad.

    December 30, 2009 at 7:23 pm | Report abuse |
  155. Tim

    He wasn't a "regular" and it didn't happen on the show!!! Still very sad.

    December 30, 2009 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
  156. AW

    Regardless of hype, being a regular blah blah etc., etc., at the end of the day he was a wonderful man and all that mattered to him was his family. His 3 children, family and friends miss him dearly as he went way too soon. rip

    December 30, 2009 at 7:13 pm | Report abuse |
  157. Harvey

    My condolences to his entire family.

    December 30, 2009 at 7:01 pm | Report abuse |
  158. A FAN in California

    So sorry to hear of his passing.

    This reminds me of the untimely passing Steve Irwin-I remember Terri saying the stingray hitting his heart "was like falling on a pencil" when he faced far more dangers in his everyday life. Considering the dangers involved in rocketry, it's a sad irony that something like a skylight was the cause of Eric's death.

    Thoughts are with his family.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:53 pm | Report abuse |
  159. chris

    To manners: I have to agree about sending condolences on twitter. Even worse was when Ashton K used text abbreviations. It’s rude to the family to show you don’t have time to type a full sentence and you’re typing things like "2day."

    December 30, 2009 at 6:50 pm | Report abuse |
  160. bluelake

    Erik had screen credit just a few under mine at the end of the MB segment on the "Hwacha" (Korean rocket arrow cart–you can find it on YouTube). Although I never knew him, my condolences to his family.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:45 pm | Report abuse |
  161. Bill

    Wow, this is truly sad. Erik was a great guy in the episodes he appeared in and I'm sure his family as well as the MB family are all besides themselves

    I hope MB dedicates an episode to him. I did not see this weeks but have it on iTunes maybe they already have dedicated it.

    In any case, I hope they do....

    December 30, 2009 at 6:44 pm | Report abuse |
  162. Baeleth

    Manners, I would assume any way of offering and receiving condolances would be appreciated. Twitter isn't just some marketing tool to everyone. I've actually found it to be a great way to stay in contact with friends and family that I normally don't see or speak with on a regular basis. In fact, I tend to see them more often now that we use things like Twitter and Facebook. Granted, there is only so much you can say with it's limitations. However, I'm sure some individuals have offered condolences in a more personal way and with their wide audience, Twitter is a good way to do so from the Mythbusters group as a whole.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:42 pm | Report abuse |
  163. Jeff

    So very sad.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:37 pm | Report abuse |
  164. JOE

    Bad news. I just started to watch the show.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:36 pm | Report abuse |
  165. Megan Webb

    Bummer i love Mythbusters and erik will truly be missed.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:32 pm | Report abuse |
  166. uggh

    Just because they tweeted this doesn't mean there were other forms of condolences!

    The thing with the internet, if people don't do show things like this in all fashions there will be people saying "they don't care, why aren't they.." blah blah blah.

    As sad as it is, it is about PR as well.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:27 pm | Report abuse |
  167. Mike Deville

    I love that show. Sorry to hear anyone connected to it has been hurt.
    As I child, I loved "Watch Mr. Wizard." MB takes it to a new, fascinating level Mr. Wizard either never dreamed of or never dared to attempt.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:24 pm | Report abuse |
  168. rs1981

    Wow ! How sad is that ! My jaw is still scraping the floor in shock. What a shame that the accident happened. My condolences to his family.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
  169. JD

    Such a shame to lose such talented people to such preventable work-related mishaps. Erik undoubtedly died doing what he loved, but the loss is still hard. Prayers for his surviving friends and family.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:19 pm | Report abuse |
  170. Fred

    CALOSHA will be investigating this one...a skylight hole should have been covered to prevent anyone from falling through it. This is a standard OSHA requirement and a major violation.

    So sad when something so preventable causes death.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse |
  171. Rob

    Very sad, but the headline containing 'MythBusters Regular' is hype, as he was only on four of the 144 episodes and none in the last four years. Still, a reminder for everyone to be careful out there.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:13 pm | Report abuse |
  172. BDog

    I hate deceptive headlines. Mythbusters regular?? Ummm No he's not. He worked behind the scenes.

    December 30, 2009 at 6:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • robert

      RIGHT ON!!!!!!! I WAS THINKING AND TELLING PEOPLE 1 OF THEM DIED AS 1 OF THE REGULARS JAMIE & ADAM
      DAMM NOW I HAVE TO RETRACT MY TELLING THEM IT WAS A GUY BEHIND THE SCENES
      ANYWAY NO ONE LIKES TO SEE ANYONE DIE RIGHT AFTER XMAS TOO A REAL BUMMER!!!!!
      ROBERT FROM BAYONNE N.J.

      November 21, 2010 at 6:13 am | Report abuse |
  173. Joyce Warnke B.C.

    His presence will be missed. Deepest Condolence to his family & friends.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:54 pm | Report abuse |
  174. Kristen

    Sounds like he wasn't working for the show when he fell. Take some time to remember the dangers that our hard working trades members face everyday. They risk life and limb to provide electricity, water and shelter for the rest of us. My condolences to his family and to the Mythbusters family.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:52 pm | Report abuse |
  175. John

    Gravity is no myth.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |
  176. SJ

    Julie, did you even read the blurb? He didn't die in the name of entertainment; it was while doing regular electrical work, his "day" job.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |
  177. David Gibson

    to Julie--–did you read the article ? he unfortunatly died in a work related accident which had nothing to do with the show.
    None the less it it is sad .

    December 30, 2009 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
  178. manners

    Ashton Kutcher sending his condolences "2 Brittany Murphy's family" and now this. people, twitter is not an acceptable means of offering one's sympathies after someone you know DIES TRAGICALLLY.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:45 pm | Report abuse |
  179. James Gilson

    I am so sorry to hear this. I really enjoy this program. I wish the family well.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:44 pm | Report abuse |
  180. Ben

    I love MythBusters..... this is a tragedy. My heart goes out to his family and friends and the Myth Busters crew.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
  181. Julie

    What a shame. I guess these guys know the risks going into the business and are willing to take that chance in the name of entertainment. My thoughts are with Erik's family.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:38 pm | Report abuse |
  182. IsNot

    That is a shame! His contributions to MB will be sorely missed. He wasn't hard on the eyes, either.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:37 pm | Report abuse |
  183. Ron - St. Louis

    So sorry to hear of Erik's passing. The series is a great and while I like all the episodes, Erik's contributions to the rocket episodes are some of my favorites.

    My sincerest condolences to Erik's family and the MB team.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:35 pm | Report abuse |
  184. David

    Major bummer!

    I guess this is why Jamie on Mythbusters is always so anal about safety.

    December 30, 2009 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |

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