Two ECU students killed, two hurt in S.C. crash
By Bobby Burns
The Daily Reflector
Sunday, April 14, 2019
A car crash in South Carolina on Friday killed two East Carolina University students along with the driver of another car and seriously injured two more students, officials said Saturday.
Shea Crothers, 22, of 17 Avenue F, Charlotte, and James Edwin Stanley, 18, of 533 Oyster Rock Lane, Sneads Ferry, were killed along with Walter Lee Prezzy Jr., 51, of 352 Curve Inn Road, Holly Hill, S.C., the Orangeburg County coroner told the local newspaper, the Orangeberg Times & Democrat.
Crothers and Stanley were traveling with two other students when their car collided with the car driven by Prezzy, Trooper 1st Class Tyler Tidwell told the Times & Democrat on Friday. The names of the two other students were not available.
Reached Saturday by The Daily Reflector, Tidwell said the wreck occurred about 1:40 p.m. He said Crothers and Stanley both were passengers in their vehicle.
ECU reported Saturday morning that the students were members of fraternities and sororities and that news of the deaths shook the campus community. Crisis counseling is available to anyone who needs it, a news release said.
“The full breadth of our staff and resources will be available to the students, faculty and staff on our campus,” said Virginia Hardy, vice chancellor for student affairs. “We will have crisis counselors as well as members of the Dean of Students Office, the Division of Student Affairs and ECU’s entire community ready to assist our students through this tragic time.”
The students were in a 2016 Honda on U.S. 15 between I-26 and Holly Hill, about an hour northwest of Charleston, Trooper Tidwell reported. The Honda collided with a northbound 1999 Acura sedan.
A passenger also was in the Acura. That passenger and the two ECU students who were injured were hospitalized, Tidwell and the university reported.
U.S. 15 is a two-lane highway, Tidwell said. The Acura was headed north on the road toward Holly Hill and the Honda was traveling south toward I-26. Tidwell did not know if the wreck was a head-on collision.
Information about possible causes, speed and seatbelts also was unavailable. Tidwell said a specialized S.C. Highway Patrol unit called the Multi Discipline Accident Investigation Team is reviewing the incident and further information will be forthcoming.
“There are no words to express the amount of sadness we are feeling today,” Chancellor Cecil Staton said in the university news release. “This is truly devastating news, and we ask that all Pirates come together and join me in holding these students and their families deeply in our hearts and prayers during this unspeakable time.”
Anyone needing to speak to a counselor this weekend may contact 252-328-6661 and select option “2” to speak with a crisis counselor.
Services will be available all next week to students by visiting the ECU Center for Counseling and Student Development in Umstead Hall.