Probe of fatal fall near Sewanee, Tenn., 'inconclusive'

Probe of fatal fall near Sewanee, Tenn., 'inconclusive'

May 25th, 2013 by Ben Benton in Local Regional News

Natural Bridge in Franklin County, Tenn., is a 25-foot-high sandstone arch with a span of 50 feet that overlooks Lost Cove. Wikipedia Photo

Illustration by Laura McNutt /Times Free Press.

State parks officials say their investigation into a Coalmont, Tenn., man's fatal fall from a natural bridge in a small park near Sewanee, Tenn., was inconclusive.

First responders from Franklin County and the town of Sewanee found David Binkley Cash, 47, May 18 after he fell from Natural Bridge, Sheriff Tim Fuller said Friday. They immediately turned the scene over to state parks officials, he said.

Meg Lockhart, spokeswoman for the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, said Cash was taken to meet a medical helicopter in Sewanee. He died the next day.

Lockhart said she couldn't discuss the nature of his injuries.

"As with all incidents such as this, our park management investigated and spoke with potential witnesses in an attempt to piece together what could have caused the individual to fall," she said in an emailed response. "That investigation was inconclusive."

According to the state parks website, Natural Bridge is a three-acre area in Franklin County that overlooks Lost Cove, which is part of the nearby University of the South's domain. The bridge, once owned by the university and referred to as "Sewanee Natural Bridge," is about 25 feet high and spans about 50 feet. It was designated a state natural area in 1973.

Funeral services for Cash were held Tuesday at Cumberland Funeral Home in Monteagle, according to his obituary.

Contact staff writer Ben Benton at or 423-757-6569. Find him on Facebook at and on Twitter at