DELAWARE — Two rising seniors at Olentangy Liberty High School were killed Monday morning in a two-vehicle crash on a Delaware County road.
According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, Gavin D. Schlotterbeck, 17, of Powell, was driving north on Africa Road just south of Summerwood Crossing near Alum Creek State Park when his Toyota Camry went off the right side of the road. Schlotterbeck turned back sharply to the left, authorities said, crossing into the southbound lane and crashing into an oncoming Jeep Wrangler driven by Emily R. Bensi, 19, of Westerville.
Schlotterbeck and his passenger, Hunter D. McClelland, 17, both scheduled to enter their senior years at Olentangy Liberty High, were pronounced dead at the scene, the Highway Patrol said.
Bensi and her passenger, 12-year-old Geneva Day, of Columbus, whom she was babysitting, were taken to Ohio Health Riverside Methodist Hospital and Nationwide Children’s Hospital, respectively, each with non-life threatening injuries.
Neither excessive speed nor alcohol were believed to be a factor in the crash, said Lt. Marcus Pirrone, of the patrol’s Delaware post.
“A lot of these crashes today are failure to pay attention, failure to keep your eyes on the road,” Pirrone said. Sharp skid marks on the pavement show the Camry’s path into the grass, back to the berm and then across the roadway into the path of the Jeep.
Calling the deaths “heartbreaking,” Olentangy District Superintendent Mark Raiff said in an earlier statement: “We are deeply saddened by the tragic news of the passing of two of our Liberty High School students this morning. In the coming days we will do everything possible to support our students and families.
“… We’ve dealt with these tragedies in the past and our community will rally around the families and support them any way possible.”
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