A four-vehicle crash Monday morning along U.S. 30 in Kosciusko County has left two teens dead and another driver critically injured.
Kosciusko County Sheriff's Department deputies and emergency personnel responded at 9:35 a.m. to a report of a vehicle crash on U.S. 30, just west of County Road 450 East, according to sheriff's spokesman 1st Sgt. Chad D. Hill. Deputies found both lanes of U.S. 30 blocked by several damaged vehicles, along with a victim who was lying unconscious in the middle of the eastbound lanes.
A Kosciusko County Fatal Alcohol Crash Team reconstructionist arrived and preliminarily determined the following, according to Hill:
A 2004 Mitsubishi, driven by Kirsten Kalene Ganshorn, 17, of Walkerton was eastbound on U.S. 30 and was passing a 2011 Ford F150 pickup driven by Ronald E. Deck, 68, of Warsaw when her vehicle clipped the pickup. That sent both vehicles into the median area of U.S. 30. Deck was able to steer his vehicle back onto U.S. 30, but Ganshorn's vehicle spun out of control, crossed the median backward and struck the front of a 2007 Chevrolet flatbed truck driven by John D. Wise, 49, of Larwill. Upon impact, Ganshorn was ejected from her vehicle onto to the road.
Wise's truck, which was travelling westbound in the passing lane, was then propelled into an additional westbound vehicle travelling beside him. That vehicle, a 2013 Ford Escape, driven by Barbara A. Slater, 83, of Claypool, continued off the westbound lanes of U.S. 30 and over an embankment. Officers said an SUV that had been westbound had received damage from flying debris from the collision.
Kosciusko County Coroner Anthony Ciriello arrived at the scene and pronounced Ganshorn dead from multiple blunt-force trauma injuries. Her front-seat passenger, Ashley Nicole Demont, 17, of Argos, was airlifted while unconscious and in critical condition with multiple injuries. She died later Monday. Wise, the flatbed truck driver, was also airlifted in critical condition and taken to Lutheran Hospital in Fort Wayne with multiple injuries.
Deck, whose pickup had been clipped by Ganshorn's vehicle, and Slater, whose Escape went over an embankment, were taken to Kosciusko Community Hospital in Warsaw, to be medically cleared, with Slater having slight bruising.
F.A.C.T. members said the crash is still under investigation, according to Hill.
Assisting at the scene were Warsaw/Wayne Fire Territory; Lutheran and Parkview E.M.S.; Winona Lake, Pierceton and Warsaw police departments; Indiana conservation officers; and Indiana State Police.