Earlier this month, a family of four was killed in a chain crash on I-40 in Tennessee. The investigation into the crash is still continuing, but preliminary reports have started to surface.
(Press Release) – October 31st, 2014 – The details of the family that was killed in a car crash in I-40 early this month in Wilson County have been released. It has now also come to light that the family was driving towards Gatlinburg for a week long break that unfortunately never happened.
The car crash killed Mike and Monica Cruce, both 43, and their teenage children Stephen and Joshua. The family came from Western Kentucky. According to preliminary reports released by the Tennessee Highway Patrol officers, the family was killed when their car, along with three others, collided into two vehicles that had stopped for unknown reasons in the middle of the lanes of I-40 east. Why were these two cars stopped in the middle of a highway? Perhaps one car ran into the other?
The wreck also injured four others including Chase B. Fakes, 27, of Lebanon who was charged with a DUI Tennessee violation and driving under the influence and implied consent after the crash. Fakes was taken to jail but was later released from the Wilson County Jail on a $2,500 bond. Fakes was not in either of the two vehicles that had stopped on the highway near the State route 109.
The death of the Cruce family has shaken everyone in their community. Justin Mason, the pastor from Rosebower Baptist Church in Paducah, Ky., said that the Cruces were a close-knit and loving family. Of Mike Cruce, the pastor said that he was a true man of character, integrity, and faith. Mike loved God and his people said the pastor who has been leading the church’s youth program for the past decade now.Chase B. Fakes may be responsible for wiping out an entire family.
Pastor Mason met Mike Cruce on the Wednesday before the family left for Louisville. Cruce was pursuing an online graduate degree in Christian ministry from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville. The pastor also talked about Mike’s devotion towards the church and how Mike would always help with ongoing renovations and work with young students with an amazing and unmatched passion. The pastor says that Mike “loved hanging out” with the young ones in the church and did a wonderful job in educating them about the church’s followings.
Mike’s devotion and his Christian spirit is well recalled by Bo Hood of Indianapolis, who met Mike some 14 years ago when he was recovering from paralysis after a series of brain surgeries. Bo remembers how Mike would read out to him and would offer encouraging words while working out with him.
Tennessee Highway Patrol is in charge of the investigation, but the spokesman for the patrol team says it could be weeks before any definitive conclusions can be drawn. Sgt. Bill Miller, representing the Tennessee Highway Patrol, said that officers are continuing to investigate the crash. Also, the team is awaiting the toxicology report on Fakes which may take some time to arrive. The toxicology sample was sent to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and it will be a while before the bureau can revert back.
The other people injured in the crash were Zhao Yiting, 24, of St. Louis, Edgar Conly, 60, from Baxter, and Tamika McDonald, 32, of Lebanon.