Hunter was shot by a dog in a fatal accident and is considered a “truly amazing man” who was “not hard to love.”

The man who died in a freak hunting accident in Kansas over the weekend will be remembered for his extraordinary personality.

Joseph Austin Smith, 30, of Wichita, died Saturday morning when his dog fired his gun while they were both in his pickup truck, according to a series of press releases obtained by PEOPLE.

According to the agency, the victim was sitting in the passenger seat of his vehicle when the dog in the back seat “stepped on the gun.” The bullet struck Smith, who “died from his injuries” at the scene.

According to a GoFundMe campaign by the Wichita-based company, Smith was a “beloved employee” at Browns Plumbing Services.

His colleague Chris described his friend in a post on the website as “the most unique person I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting” who “always had something to cheer us up.”

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“He was loved and loved equally by all of us from all walks of life,” Chris wrote in the GoFundMe description. “He made us laugh every morning, whether at him or because of him, he always made sure my company was portrayed in a positive light.”

He added: “I’ve been working as a plumber for a long time and have met many, many different people, but I’ve never met another Joe and I’m confident there may not be another.”

Joe SmithJoe Smith

Joe Smith


Jessica, who also worked with Smith, described her friend as “a truly amazing man” who was “kind, funny, smart and very loving.”

“Every time he walked through the door he made someone smile. Either because he was a jerk or because his natural presence made everything better,” she said, according to the GoFundMe.

“It wasn’t hard to love Joe,” she added, “because he always made you feel unique and never left a conversation without telling you he loved you. We will miss Joe very much.”

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So far, more than $10,000 has been raised through GoFundMe to support Smith’s family following his death.

The donations “will go directly to the family” to cover funeral costs and “any other expenses the family may incur in the coming months,” which Chris said will “allow Joe’s family to grieve without financial burden.”

“We will forever feel so blessed to have him in our lives for even a short time,” Chris wrote, adding, “We will never forget you, Joe.”