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Chad WolfeTampa, FL – Over the weekend, there were reports on the the body of 31-year-old Chad Wolfe being found at the bottom an elevator shaft at the Tampa International Airport. Early reports were lite on the details, simply stating maintenance workers discovered Wolfe’s body Friday morning as they were checking on a malfunctioning elevator.

On Sunday, some more details were released, and the circumstances surrounding Wolfe’s death are just…odd. Chad and his girlfriend of 10 years flew out of Pittsburgh Thursday night and arrived in Tampa shortly before midnight. According to his girlfriend, Chad had one drink and a Xanax during the flight.

They were in town to meet friends in Central Florida, then driving a rental car to Daytona for Bike Week. According to Chad’s girlfriend, she told him to wait on the main concourse while she retrieved her luggage from baggage claim. When she returned, Chad was gone. She alerted airport police after she was unable to locate him.

The following morning, maintenance workers restoring service to a malfunctioning elevator found Chad’s body at the bottom of the shaft. Airport officials say Chad pried open the elevator doors before walking in and falling to his death. What’s odd about this is that the car rental area was adjacent to baggage claim, but Chad’s carry-on bag was found on the seventh floor  – which is a short-term parking lot.

So for some reason, Chad left his girlfriend at baggage claims and took an elevator up to the seventh floor. He then got out, and fell down the elevator shaft adjacent the one he had taken. Like I said, kind of strange.

His family say they do not believe Wolfe had the strength to pry open the elevator doors, and that he would not have committed suicide. Investigators say there’s no signs of foul play, but they are still trying to determine how he got into the shaft.

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  • Andyman

    I don’t know how much strength it takes to pull *those* elevator doors open, but back in the day, we used to go to the mall, and in Sears they had an elevator that spanned both shopping floors as well as the parking deck under the mall. We used to pull the doors open and screw around in/on the elevator for hours. It was kind of weird to see the doors open on the inside but not the outside, as well as the amount of graffiti and bubble gum in there. Of course we were actually inside the elevator so I don’t know if that is easier to do than from the outside but we were in junior high at best, so all of us would have been under 150 lbs. Sometimes when I look back at all this I wonder how I am still walking on this planet.

  • Heather_Habilatory

    Xanax and booze do not mix, especially when you want to be coherent. I suppose it’s all plausible, but I’m going to wait on this one to make up my mind.

  • Sam

    Strange story. I don’t know what happened, but i do know that i don’t want to be anywhere near that elevator when it discovers that the snack it had put away for later has mysteriously disappeared.

  • JGo555

    Maybe he wanted to die.

  • techsupp0rt

    And being in an airport… there were no surveillance cameras anywhere?

  • crazyonehere

    Damn sounds like he really got shafted

  • tkaz

    I hope there’s a follow up because this is weird. Maybe surveillance video or something?

  • MyHovercraftIsFullofEels

    I worked in an older office building and the elevators were always shut down for maintenance. I stepped into the parking garage elevator once right after the doors opened and dropped down 2 feet into the bottom of the elevator. You just expect them to work.

  • newstarshipsmell

    You just expect them to work.

    Not anymore. Not since I started reading stories here. Paranoid as fuck now.

  • LoKi4778

    Must’ve been a really bad flight…

  • Buffettgirl

    I can’t imagine that he would get so close to Bike Week in Daytona to turn around and commit suicide. That’s one of those bucket list kind of trips for most people…

  • Buffettgirl

    Things do not add up here, even with a xanax and a drink on board. I think we’ll hear more about this one, it reminds me of the girl found in the water tank on top of the hotel in LA…

  • MyHovercraftIsFullofEels

    That happened years before I got involved with DD. Different story now.

  • Suzy Sears

    Hell yeah lol I can’t believe I used to walk through doors without a thought rofl

  • Wolf_of_Mars

    I dunno about this story, one was or another.
    I was in an office building that had an older elevator. While I was reading a report, the doors opened; I started in. And then stepped out over open air. The elevator was still on the bottom floor. I guess my instincts kicked in, because I didn’t put any weight on the lead foot.

  • OutOfBubbleGum

    She got the gold luggage and he got the shaft,
    When he split right down the middle,
    She got to I.D. both halves.

  • http://www.facebook.com/bryan.thomas.752487 Bryan Thomas
  • http://www.dreamindemon.com Morbid

    We’re changing lives!

  • TasteLikeCardboard

    After all the articles about elevator ‘accidents’ on DD, as well as a little bit of my own paranoid fears, I haven’t taken an elevator in close to two years. The place I need to be may be 10 stories up from where I am, but damnit, i’m taking the stairs.

  • Gee

    I was at work at the hospital where I work and we got stuck in the elevator. All i could think about was these are the people I’m stuck with .. I was thinking Karma for sure. Then the door opened half way between floors and we had to crawl up and out and my next thought was” thank gawd I didn’t have a skirt on”

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=534902588 Meli Machiavelli

    Something in the Metamucil ain’t clean on this one…

  • lyssdexia

    Beyond strange. I know this airport well. Baggage claim, rental cars are all at street level. The only reason anyone gets on the elevators from that level is to go UP – to the multi-level public parking garage. He wouldn’t have gotten on any elevator at all to get their rental car and leave the airport. Unless he decided to check out the view from the 7th (very top) level – but wouldn’t he have told his girlfriend where he was going?
    All that being said, That airport is nice during the day, very creepy at night. I vote with Sam, the elevator ate him. And I bet the surveillance cameras are in on it and they ain’t sayin nothin…….

  • Lemurocious

    I wonder if he went looking for something (bathroom, vending machine for a drink, whatever), and realized he got off at the wrong floor. If I read the details correctly, there were two elevators next to each other. If both elevators hadn’t returned after several minutes he may have grown anxious that his girlfriend wouldn’t know where he was, and maybe he attempted to pry open the doors to see if the elevator was stuck or what the deal was. That would explain how he ended up in the adjacent shaft. (Although, how did they know which elevator he rode up there?)

    He would have set his bag down, and probably needed to use some amount of force to pry the doors apart. I could see someone pushing their body weight into the doors while attempting to open them, then falling in once the sensors were tripped, causing the doors to slide open quickly.

    We’ve all seen elevator doors start to close, only to immediately open up when an object/person crossed the threshold. Hell, most of us don’t hesitate to stick our hands into the closing doors if someone rushing over says, “Hold the elevator!” because we know they’ll slide back as soon as our hand trips the sensor. So if a person was really trying to get the doors open, they’d only need to get them open a smidgen before they slid open automatically, leaving that person to swan dive forward because they were leaning in & pushing as the doors opened.

    I’m also wondering about surveillance video… It’s an AIRPORT, which presumably has security cameras everywhere. An airport is also a great place to get confused and head the wrong direction. Navigating unfamiliar airports gets me turned around or not sure of where I’m going, and I’m typically quite good at following directions and remembering where things go. I like to study maps for fun(!) and I still make mistakes until I’m familiarized with an airport. So the idea of a person taking an elevator to the wrong place isn’t far-fetched to me, especially if that person was tired from traveling, and perhaps slightly impaired from Xanax & alcohol.

    Although, one Xanax and one drink hardly sounds like a recipe for being impaired. It sounds like exactly how my husband would deal with anxiety when flying. The only time he had to fly he happily took the Xanax my mother gave him to calm his nerves before the flight. I doubt this poor guy was truly impaired from Xanax & alcohol, unless he had an unexpected reaction to the combination (i.e. never took Xanax & alcohol together before that day, or consumed more than a normal amount).

    His girlfriend apparently didn’t think he was too impaired to leave for a few minutes while she got her bag. I think it’s more plausible that traveling led to being very tired, a condition exacerbated by Xanax & alcohol. That combination might well lead to stupid behavior, even in those who are intelligent enough under normal circumstances. And if he was really worn out, she may have said, “You don’t need to walk all the way down there, just chill here for a few minutes while I get my bag.”

    I dunno though. That’s just my theory. He might have been straight up murdered for all I know. Although I really hope not; his death was tragic enough.

  • Dragonsmuse

    That just made me more paranoid than any of the other elevator stories. That must have been horrifying.

  • LeaveMeBe

    IKR? I’ve always hated/feared fucking elevators but this site gave me concrete cause to avoid them.

  • LeaveMeBe

    Dammit, Gee! What were you thinking? You’re lucky the damn thing didn’t get unstuck while you were crawling out!!! Don’t do that ever again. *smacks you then hugs you* You scared me. :(

  • Gee

    Are you kidding mee… With my cat-like agile reflexes I was up and outta that bitch quick :) Love me some LMB. I’ll never leave ya babe!

  • frog0008

    Is there some reason you feel you needed to post Chad’s FB page? Seriously????? What are you hoping to judge him by?????? Too bad it is a tragedy, isn’t it. suspicious, maybe, but still, a life was lost. Honor that, b/c his friends at home do!

  • http://www.facebook.com/schofieldmisty Misty Sue

    Weird…I wonder why he didn’t go to retrieve his luggage with gf since they had both just flown in….

  • mrskailuakona

    I’m happy all those that posted aren’t pointing blame like those on TBO since Chad was shown intoxicated on video at TIA. This was damage control for the upcoming lawsuit that will be filed.
    It doesn’t matter if you’re drunk or sober you don’t expect an elevator to malfunction so it
    could’ve happened to anyone. Apparently TIA is so obsessed over screening all passengers
    they forget important details like maintaining the elevators. Isn’t the sign there in the elevator
    showing when it last got serviced for a reason? Having lived in Tampa, Flori-DUH for 30+ years
    I don’t find it shocking at all. Another wonderful day in Tampa Bay!

  • mrskailuakona

    All except for Heather Habilatory the habitual idiot!

  • mrskailuakona

    Exactly! Nothing surprises me in Tampa, Flori-DUH. Expect to be surprised.

  • mrskailuakona

    Having flown in to Tampa many times I had to either take the escalator or the elevator to get to the Baggage Claim. His father was renting a car like you said it’s on the Baggage Claim level which is street level so most likely he was retrieving his luggage meeting his father & girlfriend there then the elevator went up to the 7th floor. Haven’t you EVER rode an elevator that before you could react it went up instead of down? Just wondering. Most will stay on board perhaps he left thinking he was on the Baggage Level floor then fell to his death. The surveillance cameras have only video of him staggering around so it’s damage control time. I love TIA night or day it’s not creepy at all. Try LAX at night that’s creepy! Once I was UNDERGROUND in a tunnel then stuck when it was blocked off with only a couple of people alone for a while dark for 30 minutes I started to panic until they allowed us to continue to walk underground for 20 minutes! Not good! Still miss your Tampa Bay after 30+ years living in Flori-DUH It’s All Good!

  • Shuan Kwong

    I work with an elevator company. Employee accidents are common but this incident is strange and unfortunate.