Flora Hilderbran Commissioners to meet with DP&L officials New state graduation requirements called a ‘train wreck’ Catching up with Keller Senior Profile: Justin Knechtly Piketon size is too much for Lady Indians, Peebles falls in sectional finals Greyhounds grab Senior Night win Indians finish regular season riding six-game winning streak Harper, Hupp, Defense lead Lady Devils to fourth consecutive sectional championship West Union Elementary recognizes Students of the Month for January Second Healthy Hero awarded by Adams County Health and Wellness Coalition Coal company files to intervene in power plant closings Senior Profile: Jessica Sowards Senior Profile: Dennis Welch Dorothy E Walls Mabel Chamblin Michael R Jones Marie I Simmons Ray Johnson One thing to remember this President’s Day Adams County Deer Harvest down over 21% MLSD amends five-year budget, prepares for future with power plant closings Lady Dragons triumph in sectional opener Lady Hounds eighth graders capture SHAC Tournament title Gary L Fetters Sr Boys Sectional brackets released ‘We’re only as good as the way we treat others’ Another round of smiles Adams County Board of DD members recognized Terry L Unger 8th Grade Lady Devils ousted in tourney semis WU’s McCarty signs with Ohio Christian Joyce A Huddleson Carolyn Spires BREAKING NEWS: Peebles police search for man accused of selling marijuana-laced sweets Decision Time BBN Senior Profile: Summer Grundy Lady Devils fall to Southeastern, 56-48 Devils outlast Manchester 47-44 in double overtime Peebles holds second Hall of Fame Ceremony Senior Profile: Patrick England Sowards hits 1,000, ties PHS three-point mark County agencies prepare for sweeping budget cuts Manchester Council votes to cut police chief’s hours Wrestling debuts in Adams County Peebles Library hosts book signing As plants power down, community must step up Raymond P Dryden Alva Palmer Billie L Shoemaker Judith Long Brent A Arn Girls basketball sectional pairings announced WU’s Weeks will continue gridiron career at next level West Union JH Boys drop pair at Ripley Eighth Grade Lady Hounds roll into SHAC semi-finals Janet A Kennedy DP&L moving ahead with plans to close power plants Outreach Center in Peebles is a hub of giving River Sweep contest winners announced Gordley hits 1,000 mark, but Indians drop crucial SHAC contest to Lynchburg Manchester lifters compete at Piketon Senior Profile: Madelyn Sanders Charles L Hurd Randy Casto Bobby Strunk Dorothy J Scott Chester A Lanter Coach David Smalley picks up 500th career win at Rio Grande Dustin Holbrook Senior Profile: Camron Gordley As usual, optimism abounds on 2017 Reds Caravan Breeze, Beasley newest members of NAHS Athletic HOF Two humble men Adams County Manor Home Health Care makes road to recovery easier Don and Venita Bowles named as Outstanding Fair Supporters ‘Tip off For Tammy’ is a huge success, joint effort by two schools Husted campaign makes stop in Peebles Benefit held for double-lung transplant recipient I loved that muddy water, building in the creek Margaret E Broughton Larry A Hanson DP&L press release confirms closing of power plants Eighth grade girls showdown lives up to hype, North Adams wins in overtime, 45-43 Senior Profile: Raeanna Stamm North Adams Football sign-ups coming soon North Adams JV girls go 11-4 with win over Peebles Harper wins MaxPreps/JJHuddle Athlete of the Week West Union duo headed to the college gridiron Lady Devils make it 11 straight with win at Peebles Adams County residents attend Trump Inauguration A Look back at our Archives Peebles native comes home to film documentary Ohio Valley Wrestling Cub hosting home match on Jan. 31 Ruth A Branscome Velma Hughes Carol L Lewis Betty L Greiner Devils top New Boston 63-53 in finale of Coach Young Classic Lady Devils rout Eastern Pike in Young Classic

Teens injured in accident

In her 14 years of service with the Adams County Emergency Medical Service, EMT Tina Knechtly has been witness to every parent’s nightmare – the loss of a child: The loss of hopes and dreams, the potential that will never be realized, the future forever changed in the mangled wreckage of automobiles.

When she sent her 17-year-old twins, Sara and Justin, off to school on Friday, Jan. 15, she’d given Sara the usual speech about “getting up earlier so you won’t always be running late.”

“She just rolled her eyes at me,” Tina remembered, a typical teenager.”

No more than five minutes after her children had hurriedly left the house, her phone rang.

“It was Justin, I could tell from the sound of his voice that something was very wrong.”

There had been an accident. The two teens had been speeding southbound on Route 136 in Sara’s red 2004 Chevrolet Cavalier. It was the same road they traveled every day to the Career and Technical Center in West Union. It was familiar, and Sara didn’t want to be late for school.

According to Ohio State Highway Patrolman, Donnie Edgington, “Sara was traveling at an excessive speed when she lost control in a left hand curve and traveled off the right side of the road, overturned and struck a tree.”

“Because I didn’t want to be a few minutes late to school,” Sara wrote on her Facebook page, “I took a curve too fast and lost control. The rest I don’t remember, but they tell me we went into woods, rolled, and some trees stopped us. If the trees hadn’t been there, a ledge was waiting for us.”

When first responders arrived at the scene, the teens’ mother was among them. “I didn’t know how bad the wreck was, I didn’t know what to expect, so I came as an EMT, then I saw the car, and whenever I’ve come upon a car in that condition, I know it can’t be good,” she told the Defender.

The West Union Life Squad transported both Sara and Justin to the Adams County Regional Medical Center.

Their injuries were not life-threatening, but for Sara, they were life-changing.

On her Facebook page the following day, reflecting upon the choices she’d made and the consequences of her actions, she wrote,

“Because I didn’t want to be a few minutes late for school my brother and I almost lost our lives. My parents came real close to spending the rest of their lives without their children. Because I didn’t want to be a few minutes late for school I could’ve killed my brother and would’ve been charged with murder. That’s hard and all, but jail is only for a few years, knowing that you killed your own flesh and blood over something so petty lasts a life time. Guys, Be a few minutes late!

I promise you it is not worth a car crash. If you have someone riding with you – you have a life in your car. Don’t take that life because you need to hurry. God was with us that day. Not only did he let us walk away but he let us walk away with only minor injuries. Bub (Justin) has a few scratches and bruises and I have a concussion and four staples in my head. The officers tell us we should not have walked away with our lives. Even though I don’t remember more than half of what happened, I have learned a very valuable lesson. Don’t give me a pity party because I don’t deserve one. If anything I need a slap in the head from all of you, LOL. Thank you to everyone who prayed for us and please take what I have written to heart because if it happens to you, you may not be so lucky.”

Two local teens escaped serious injury during a single-car accident on State Route 136 on Jan. 15.
http://www.peoplesdefender.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/web1_Accident.jpgTwo local teens escaped serious injury during a single-car accident on State Route 136 on Jan. 15. Submitted photo
Accident proves to be a life-changing experience

By Patricia Beech

pbeech@civitasmedia.com

Reach Patricia Beech at 937-544-2391 or at pbeech@civitasmedia.com

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2016 People's Defender