SR man one of seven killed statewide during Independence Day weekend

Darrell Todd Maurina

SAINT ROBERT, Mo. (July 6, 2009) — An early Sunday morning crash that killed a local man was one of seven fatalities statewide during the Independence Day weekend.

State troopers reported on Monday that Ben William Schwab, 42, of St. Robert, had been walking across Missouri Avenue in St. Robert when he was struck by a pickup.

St. Robert police issued a more detailed report. According to Sgt. Butch Hohman, Schwab was crossing the roadway walking from west to east at 2:15 a.m. and succeeded at crossing three southbound lanes and a median before entering the northbound lanes. Schwab continued walking across the roadway and walked directly into the path of an oncoming 1998 Chevrolet pickup driven by Edward Lee Horne Jr., 40, of Dixon. Horne was unable to see Schwab in time to avoid his vehicle striking Schwab, who sustained serious injuries from the impact.

Schwab was treated at the scene by Pulaski County Ambulance District paramedics and was transported to General Leonard Wood Army Community Hospital, where he received further treatment and was subsequently transported to St. John’s Hospital in Springfield.

According to Pulaski County Ambulance District Director Gary Carmack, attempts were made to airlift Schwab to Springfield but weather conditions were bad enough that the helicopter could not be used. Ambulance district personnel transported Schwab by ground ambulance to Springfield, but personnel at the post hospital called St. Robert police at 6:03 a.m. notifying them that Schwab had died as a result of injuries sustained in the accident.

Funeral information is not yet complete, but arrangements are under the direction of Memorial Chapels and Crematory of Waynesville/St. Robert. Preliminary obituary information indicated that Schwab died at 5:48 a.m. on Sunday.

During the Independence Day weekend counting period, which began at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 2, and ended at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, July 5, state troopers worked 317 crashes in which four people died and 134 were injured. City police in St. Robert, St. Louis, and Lee’s Summit each investigated one fatality. According to state patrol reports, troopers arrested 149 people for driving while intoxicated during this year’s holiday weekend. That’s less than last year, in which 11 people died and 194 were injured in 382 traffic crashes statewide. Troopers made 195 driving while intoxicated arrests during the 2008 counting period.

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