Injured in South River Market explosion?
Call (612) 337-6126

Elliot Olsen has regained millions for clients injured – or worse – in explosions. If you know someone hurt in the South River Market explosion in Buena Vista, Virginia, you should have them call Elliot at (612) 337-6126 for a free consultation.

Explosions are weekly – if not daily – occurrences across the United States. The South River Market explosion on May 10 in Buena Vista, Virginia, is a tragic example.

Here is the initial report on the blast from WTVR-TV news in Richmond:

State Police confirmed that they have found the remains of one person, and at least three people remain unaccounted for after an explosion at a Virginia gas station.

Family members of those who are missing have gathered near the South River Market in Buena Vista, awaiting updates from emergency officials.

“At approximately 9:50 a.m. this morning, Rockbridge County Sheriff’s Office and Rockbridge County Fire and Rescue was called to the scene of an explosion,” a Virginia State Police spokesperson said. “At this stage, police and fire crews are working to account for all the individuals that may have been located in the building at the time of the explosion. Four adults have been transported to Carilion Stonewall Jackson Hospital and are being treated for injuries.”

State Police Sgt. Richard Garletts said three to five people remain unaccounted for, which includes family members of employees and a possible patron.

The South River Market is located on Old Buena Vista Road near South River Road in Rockbridge County.

State Police are investigating what caused the explosion, but said that it does not appear to be suspicious.

South River Market explosion: Death toll at 4

Of course, information was sketchy at the outset, but more and more has been revealed in the two weeks since.

WSET-TV news in Lynchburg, Virginia, reported recently that Virginia State Police identified one of the victims in the May 10 South River Market explosion in Buena Vista.

Police also confirmed that the death toll from the Buena Vista explosion had increased to four: three people died in the May 10 explosion at South River Market, and one injured victim – Roger Lee Roberts, 69, of Buena Vista – died the next day at VCU Medical Center in Richmond. Roberts was the owner of the South River Market.

Roberts’ son, Kevin Roberts, and granddaughter, Samantha Roberts Lewis, died in the blast, family members told the Roanoke Times. Paul Ruley, a regular customer of the market, also died, according to a statement issued by the Roberts and Lewis families.

“We grieve with the Ruley family as they suffer the loss of their dedicated husband, father, and son, Paul Ruley,” the families’ statement read. “Paul was a regular patron of South River Market, but more importantly, he was a friend.”

Garletts, however, could not confirm the identities of those who died until autopsies from the medical examiner’s office were finalized. Police are still investigating the cause of the explosion, but have said it does not appear to be suspicious.

Three other injured victims were taken to Carilion Stonewall Jackson Hospital in Lexington, but no information has been released on their conditions.

South River Market explosion: Victims’ statement

Wayne Rogers and Jeff Staton released a statement this week in which they came forward as two of the injured individuals who attempted to help victims of the South River Market explosion on May 10:

“On May 10, 2019, an explosion at South River Market resulted in the loss of four people. Wayne Rogers and Jeff Staton identify themselves among the injured who acted as quickly and in the best way they could to assist others before first responders arrived on the scene.

“Mr. Rogers and Mr. Staton offer sincere condolences to the Lewis, Roberts, and Ruley families, all of which are grieving the loss of loved ones lost in or due to the explosion.

“Please respect the privacy of Wayne Rogers, Jeff Staton, and their families by not requesting interviews or photographs.”

Free consultation

Elliot Olsen has decades of experience representing people harmed in fires and explosions. You can contact him for a free consultation by filling out the following form and submitting it: