The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

WHS golf team injured in 5-car accident


April 19, 2018

Members of the Wahkiakum High School golf team were among the injured in a five-vehicle traffic accident at 1:25 p.m. Thursday.

According to a report from the Washington State Patrol, the team was in a 2005 Ford Excursion, fourth in a line of eastbound vehicles stopped for highway maintenance work near milepost 44, about two miles west of County Line Park. A 2014 Ford F350 pickup driven by Niels W. Paulsen, age 84, Centralia, collided with the team van from behind and pushed it into the vehicle in front, causing a chain reaction.

Van driver and team golf coach Nick Vavoudis, 64, Cathlamet, sustained injuries and was airlifted to PeaceHealth Southwest in Vancouver.

Golf team members Logan LaBerge, Kaden Anderson, Bryce Good, Elijah Doiron, Tyler Stonge, Heidi Bruntmeyer and Zachary Johnston were transported to PeaceHealth St. John Hospital for treatment of unspecified injuries.

Paulsen also sustained injuries and was transported to St. John.

Also involved in the collision were:

--Skamokawa resident Keith L. Hoofnagle, 76, who was driving a 2015 Toyota Yaris; he was transported to St. John;

--Longview resident Alexander J. Daight, 28; who was driving a Toyota Scion; he was not injured, and

--Olympia resident John D. Lorenzo, 59, who was driving a 1996 Ford F250 pickup; he was not injured.

Lorenzo's vehicle was damaged and could be driven from the scene; the other vehicles were towed away.

All drivers were wearing seatbelts, the state patrol reported; it was unknown if golf team members were belted.


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