By Margie Wuebker
COLDWATER — A Coldwater man died Wednesday afternoon shortly after his car collided with a Two By Two Child Development Center van injuring the driver and four children. The accident occurred on Main Street near the Seventh Street intersection.
Esteban R. Castillo, 66, 110 S. Market St., was pronounced dead at Mercer County Community Hospital, Coldwater. The initial 911 call logged at 3:25 p.m. described his condition at the scene as unresponsive.
Castillo was driving westbound on Main when his 1993 Dodge Shadow suddenly veered left of center for an unknown reason and struck the eastbound 1995 Chevy van driven by Beverly Anders, 49, 604 N. Mill St., Coldwater. Anders reportedly was en route to the development center, 800 N. Seventh St., after picking up school-age clients.
Both heavily damaged vehicles came to rest along the south curb.
Anders, who is president of Two By Two, was taken by ambulance to Community Hospital and admitted for treatment of unspecified injuries. Also transported by Coldwater units of the Mercer County Emergency Medical Service were three passengers, Rachel Eichenauer, 9, 1109 Ruby Lane, Coldwater, Michaelin Mohler, 8, 814 S. Dogwood Drive, Coldwater, and Zachary Huff, 8, 421 Betty Lane, Coldwater. A fourth passenger, Justin Crum, 8, 402 Betty Lane, Coldwater, was taken to the hospital by a parent. All the children were treated then released.
Castillo was not wearing a seatbelt, according to Coldwater Police Chief Gery Thobe. Anders and the children were using seatbelts at the time of the crash.
An autopsy will be performed today to determine whether Castillo suffered some kind of physical problem, such as a heart attack or a stroke, prior to the crash. Thobe said nothing found at the scene suggested alcohol as a possible factor.
Mercer County Sheriff’s deputies also responded to the scene.