Local Social Media Standout Dies of Natural Causes Before Wreck

2:51 PM, Jan 11, 2013   |    comments
Rick Stilwell, known to many as @RickCaffeinated (image via Facebook)
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Richland County, SC (WLTX) - The Richland County Coroner says a man had a medical event that caused his death before being involved in a car collision.

Gary Watts said Jerry Rick Stilwell Jr. of Cayce died along Farrow Road Friday morning.

State troopers say he was driving in the northbound lanes when his car left the roadway and crossed the median. His car eventually collided with a minivan in the southbound lanes, and then hit an embankment.

Stillwell was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Watts said an autopsy confirmed Stillwell had a medical problem before losing control of the vehicle, and died from that condition, not injuries sustained in the collision.

The driver of the other vehicle was not seriously hurt.

Rick Stilwell, known to many Midlands social media users as @RickCaffeinated on Twitter and Instagram, long had been seen as one of the areas leading social network gurus, an early adopter of many technological platforms. 

Early Friday afternoon Stilwell's wife revealed his death on Twitter with this message: 

"For those on Twitter who follow @RickCaffeinated, we lost an amazing husband, father, and friend today. I am shattered."

Twitter users close to Stilwell quickly started spreading the word of his loss, including the hashtag #LiveLikeRick, who was most often found on Twitter providing advice and positive messages.  

Additionally, a Memorial page was created in Stilwell's memory on Facebook, where users familiar with him, personally or only via social networking, shared memories and launched plans for an informal gathering in his honor:


Also, by mid-afternoon members of the group had begun fundraising for Stilwell's family, and in typical RickCaffeinated style, it's set up online: rally.org/livelikerick

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