'Then we heard boom.' Two die in separate accidents Thursday in Osnaburg Township

·4 min read
An Ohio Highway Patrol trooper investigates the scene Thursday evening where a Minerva man was killed in head-on collision on U.S. Route 30.
An Ohio Highway Patrol trooper investigates the scene Thursday evening where a Minerva man was killed in head-on collision on U.S. Route 30.

OSNABURG TWP. – A motorcyclist and the driver of a pickup were killed in two separate accidents a few miles from each other Thursday.

Christopher A. Metzger, 54, of Paris Township died at Aultman Hospital, according to the Ohio Highway Patrol and Stark County Coroner's Office. He was riding a purple 2000 Honda Goldwing Trike motorcycle and collided with a 2003 Ford Explorer around 4:42 p.m. on state Route 44 just south of Orchard View Drive SE.

Meanwhile, Thomas K. Miller, 68, of Minerva in Carroll County died at the scene of a crash at 5:59 p.m. along Lincoln Street SE, which also is U.S. Route 30, the coroner's office said. He was driving a red 1999 Chevy S-10 pickup that splintered into two in a head-on collision with a black 2021 Dodge Charger.

Video footage of the S-10 pickup-Dodge Charter accident was captured by the surveillance camera of a nearby resident. The crash took place a mile and a half east of where Route 30 meets Route 44 South southeast of East Canton. I

An employee of Canton Towing walks by the wreckage of two vehicles involved in a fatal collision that killed the driver of the S-10 pickup on Lincoln Street SE in Osnaburg Township Thursday evening. The death was one of two fatalities that took place in separate accidents a few miles apart a little more than an hour apart.
An employee of Canton Towing walks by the wreckage of two vehicles involved in a fatal collision that killed the driver of the S-10 pickup on Lincoln Street SE in Osnaburg Township Thursday evening. The death was one of two fatalities that took place in separate accidents a few miles apart a little more than an hour apart.

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Double tragedy

The crashes were about five miles away from each other. Ohio Highway Patrol troopers who responded to the first fatal crash then proceeded to go to the second one.

Harry Campbell, the chief investigator of the Stark County coroner, said one of the troopers gave Metzger, the motorcyclist, CPR when he arrived on the scene. That's before Osnaburg Township EMS rushed Metzger to Aultman.

The patrol said it appears that Metzger failed to negotiate a curve on Route 44, causing him to go left of center and strike the Ford Explorer.

Metzger was wearing a helmet and was thrown from the motorcycle, said Ohio Highway Patrol Sgt. Ashley Jackson.

The driver of the Ford Explorer, a 53-year-old Malvern woman, was not injured.

In the second crash, the man driving the Dodge Charger, Kenneth D. Wolfe, 25, of Massillon, was taken with serious injuries to Aultman Hospital, the patrol said. His female passenger, Bella Baroni, 22, of Mogadore, was taken to Cleveland Clinic Mercy Hospital.

It's not clear if the people involved with the second crash were wearing seat belts, Jackson said.

The video, which the resident allowed a reporter to view on the resident's smartphone, shows that the Dodge Charger was going west on Route 30. It went left of the center to pass two vehicles in what the Ohio Highway Patrol says is a no-passing zone for westbound vehicles. As the Charger accelerated, it collided head-on with the eastbound S-10 pickup.

The driver of the S-10 pickup truck veered right to avoid the collision. But it was too late. The vehicles crashed and went off the south side of Route 30 into a yard.

The vehicle behind the S-10, a black 2018 Toyota 4Runner, barely missed becoming involved with the collision and continued going east. It sustained minor damage, the patrol said. The driver, a 50-year-old Minerva man, was not injured.

Canton Towing workers clear wreckage from the scene of a head-on collision on U.S. Route 30 that killed a Minerva man Thursday evening.
Canton Towing workers clear wreckage from the scene of a head-on collision on U.S. Route 30 that killed a Minerva man Thursday evening.

'It shouldn't happen.'

Nearby, Walt Hall, his wife Cindy Hall and their neighbor Peg Johns watched the troopers perform their investigation as the tow truck workers placed the damaged vehicles onto flatbed trucks.

It was Walt Hall's camera mounted on the second-floor of his house that recorded what had happened. And he turned over a copy of the video to the patrol.

Walt Hall shows Ohio Highway Patrol troopers the video from his surveillance camera of the fatal head-on crash that took place Thursday evening in front of his home on U.S. Route 30 in Osnaburg Township.
Walt Hall shows Ohio Highway Patrol troopers the video from his surveillance camera of the fatal head-on crash that took place Thursday evening in front of his home on U.S. Route 30 in Osnaburg Township.

The Hall's were inside when the crash took place.

"We heard the brakes. And then we heard 'boom!' said Cindy Hall.

She immediately called 911.

Her husband said he grabbed his fire extinguisher as flames came out of the Charger. He tried to put out the fire, but he said the flames kept coming. Walt Hall said firefighters who arrived minutes later extinguished the fire.

Motorists had stopped their vehicles and were trying to render aid.

A woman who identified herself as a nurse checked the pulse of the driver of the S-10 truck, Walt Hall said. The driver was dead.

Others helped the man and woman in the Charger to get out of the vehicle whose airbags had deployed. They were conscious and talking but in shock, said Walt Hall. He said that he brought the woman some water.

"There's lots of accidents on this road yearly," said Johns. "It happens, but it shouldn't. But it does."

You can reach Robert at (330) 580-8327 or robert.wang@cantonrep.com. 

This article originally appeared on The Repository: Two crashes, two deaths in Osnaburg Township Thursday