Woman dies when homemade cannon explodes at house party

GREELEY, Iowa — Authorities say an eastern Iowa woman was killed when a homemade cannon exploded at a backyard gathering.

Davenport television station KWQC-TV reports that 55-year-old Lori L. Heims of Edgewood was flown to an Iowa City hospital, where she was pronounced dead. The Delaware County Sheriff’s Department says Heims was injured at the gathering with friends in Greeley around 11:40 p.m. Saturday.

Investigators say the cannon was loaded and fired, and when it went off, the rear portion of the barrel blew out and sent fragments toward Heims. One of the fragments struck Heims in the head.

Heims was taken to a hospital in Manchester before being flown to Iowa City, but doctors were unable to save her.

Greeley is about 80 miles north of Iowa City.

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