Evan Thomas Silva died after he was struck by shrapnel from the cannon.
He was 26 years old and a guest at the party.
The homeowner told police that he bought the small cannon at an auction and had fired it several times before. When he fired it during the party on Saturday, though, it exploded.
Silva was standing about 10 to 15 feet away from the cannon. He was the only person hit by shrapnel.
In recent years, several gender reveal events have taken dangerous and deadly turns, similar to this tragedy.
Last year, California’s massive El Dorado wildfire was caused by a pyrotechnic device used during a gender reveal party.
The fire burned over 22,000 acres of property, destroying 10 buildings. Most importantly, a firefighter died while battling the blaze.
In 2017, an expectant father started the infamous Sawmill Fire in Arizona when he fired a gun at an explosives-packed target. The explosion went on to spark a fire that burned nearly 47,000 acres and caused more than $8 million dollars in damage.
After the El Dorado fire, the blogger credited with popularizing the gender reveal trend wrote an impassioned post, begging families to stop having dangerous parties that include explosives and pyrotechnics.
“Stop it. Stop having these stupid parties. For the love of God, stop burning things down to tell everyone about your kid’s penis. No one cares but you,” Jenna Karvunidis wrote in the now-viral post.
“Oh, and of course I’m getting hate messages,” she added. “Excuse me for having a cake for my family in 2008. Just because I’m the gEnDeR rEvEaL iNVeNtoR doesn’t mean I think people should burn down their communities.”
In a separate post, Karvunidis also discussed the difference between gender and sex and the importance of not assigning too much importance to a baby’s gender.
“Who cares what gender the baby is? I did at the time because we didn’t live in 2019 and didn’t know what we know now – that assigning focus on gender at birth leaves out so much of their potential and talents that have nothing to do with what’s between their legs,” she wrote.
“PLOT TWIST, the world’s first gender-reveal party baby is a girl who wears suits!”
Look, we get it. We know how exciting it is to find out that you’re pregnant. We totally get wanting to celebrate that little baby before and after it’s arrived.
But let’s agree to leave explosives out of our celebrations. They’re deadly. They’re dangerous. And the risk is just too high.