By Margie Wuebker
A Coldwater man was killed and his son critically injured early Saturday as they returned home after working a night shift at Plastipak Packaging in Jackson Center.
The crash, which also claimed the life of an Anna woman, occurred at 12:56 a.m. at the intersection of state Route 274 and Pasco-Montra Road.
The Shelby County Sheriff's Office identified the dead as Brett C. Miller, 35, 101 First St., Coldwater, and Morgan Piatt, 19, 202 W. Main St., Anna.
Michael Summers, 21, 513 Fifth St., Coldwater, was driving a 1995 Dodge Intrepid westbound on state Route 274 when a southbound 2005 Dodge pickup truck driven by David H. Alexander, 23, 17222 state Route 47, Sidney, failed to stop at the Pasco-Montra Road stop sign. Both vehicles traveled off the southwest corner of the intersection before coming to a stop.
Summers was trapped inside the wreckage nearly 30 minutes as Jackson Center firefighters worked to free him with the "jaws of life." He was taken by CareFlight helicopter to Miami Valley Hospital in Dayton, where he remains in critical condition in the intensive care unit. His father and the Anna woman, a passenger in the Alexander truck, were pronounced dead at the scene by Shelby County Coroner Dr. Fred Haussman.
Andrea Levi, 19, 12687 Sharp Road, Sidney, another passenger in the truck, was taken by Jackson Center Emergency Medical Services to Wilson Memorial Hospital, Sidney. No information regarding her condition was available due to patient privacy regulations.
Neither Alexander nor passenger Joshua Koenig, 19, 15870 Pasco-Montra Road, were injured.
Alcohol may be a factor in the crash, according to sheriff's office reports. No charges have been filed yet, pending completion of the investigation and a review by the Shelby County Prosecutor's Office.
Also assisting at the scene were troopers from the Piqua Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol and Jackson Center Police.
"My dad was a landscaper at heart," Goldie Bodiker of Spencerville told The Daily Standard. "He was working at the factory in order to save money."
Miller also enjoyed taking karate classes at Genkotsu Karate in Celina and grilling outdoors whenever the mood struck.
"It didn't matter whether there were three feet of snow on the ground and he was bundled in a coat," Bodiker said in a voice laced with emotion. "He would cook anything he could fit on the grill -- he really didn't care if it was a holiday, a Sunday or any day of the week for that matter."
His giving nature and willingness to help others endured in death as it had in life, according to Bodiker. Doctors were able to fulfill his stated wishes of becoming an organ and tissue donor.
"We will miss his sense of humor and his smile," she said. "He always had a big smile on his face."
No funeral is planned at this time. Family members will celebrate Miller's life after Summers is released from the hospital.