Tennessee man dies in I-75 crash near Bluffton

BLUFFTON — Troopers from the Findlay Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol are investigating a three-vehicle crash that resulted in a fatality at approximately 4:18 p.m. Friday on Interstate 75 near mile post 143 in Bluffton.

According to the report, Anthony Reid, 42, of Mount Clemens, Michigan, was driving a 2014 Ford F250 north on I-75 when he slowed for traffic. Wayne Howard, 79, of Loudon, Tennessee, was driving a 2014 Ford E450 U-Haul rental truck and did not notice Reid slowing and struck the rear of Reid’s vehicle. Howard drove off of the right side of the road after striking the vehicle and over-corrected while trying to get back on the road, striking a 2005 Freightliner being driven by Timothy Baker, 59, of Hicksville, in the rear.

Howard was pronounced dead at the scene. Three passengers in Howards vehicle, Jamie Howard, 40, Keely Howard, 13, and Jeremy Wilkenson, 6, all of Jackson, Michigan, were injured in the crash. Jamie and Keely Howard were transported to Blanchard Valley Hospital and then later to St. Vincent’s Mercer Medical Center in Toledo by Life Flight for serious injuries. Wilkenson was flown from the scene by Life Flight to St. Vincent’s with serious injuries. Reid and two passenegers, Brian Thiry, 41, of New Baltimore, Michigan, and Jacob Kitson, 21, of Warren, Michigan, were not injured. Baker also was not injured in the crash.

Bluffton Fire and EMS, Bluffton Police Department, HANCO EMS, and Beaverdam Towing also assisted at the scene. Alcohol was not suspected to be a factor in the crash and all passengers were wearing seat belts.

The incident reamins under investigation.

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