School staff, students, and community mourn loss of Pickaway Co. accident victim, 17

Local News

PICKAWAY COUNTY, Ohio (WCMH) — The accident that took a 17-year-old’s life in Pickaway County remained under investigation Tuesday morning, as some of his friends and teachers gathered at Westfall High School.​

According to Jeff Sheets, superintendent for Westfall Local School District, 17-year-old Trey Collier was a senior at the high school and a member of the soccer team.​

Sheets said Collier was a good student and released this statement:​

“Trey was very highly thought of as a student here by classmates and staff members. This is a tremendous loss to our school and community, and our hearts go out to his family.”​

Collier’s soccer coach also posted to the team’s Facebook page Monday, writing:​

“Trey Collier was a great guy, a skilled mechanic and a beloved player of our team. His dream was to go to school for mechanical engineering and business management so he could open his own shop someday and create jobs here to help people. He was killed this morning in an automobile accident. Our entire program is devastated but what his family is going through is all the more heartbreaking. I loved the guy. My heart is broken & I am trying to make sense of it as much as all of my players are. Please pray for our program during this time of mourning and especially for his family.”

​Other community members, complete strangers, are mourning the loss of this young man as well.

​Mike Reed and his family have lived in the home across from the scene of the accident for two years.

​”Our hearts go out to the family, to the family of the young man who died and also to the young man who was driving, his family,” said Reed. “Their Christmas will never be the same and we’ve just been hurting. We don’t know them, but our hearts have been hurting for them.”​

Reed said he heard the accident from his home office.

“We knew right away that something significant had happened,” said Reed.​

It didn’t take long for him to confirm the worst. As he stepped out of his home, he saw the accident scene and called for his wife to call for help.​

“By that time, there were a couple of cars that stopped,” Reed said. “They were attending to the driver, so I just went up the hill and helped with traffic until the emergency responders came.”

​According to Reed, this is not the first accident in this spot across from his home to have occurred in the last couple of years.​

“There’s been at least four here, just right at this area, since we’ve lived here, at least,” said Reed.

​According to Reed, the most recent crash, prior to Monday’s fatal accident, was just a few days before.

Reed said that on Friday, a woman hit the guardrail, mangling several feet of the leading portion of it.​

The guardrail had not been repaired when the Honda Pilot Collier was riding in slammed into it.

​According to the Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office, the guardrail went through the grill of the vehicle, then through the compartment and out the back window.

​The driver was taken to the hospital with minor injuries and survived the crash.​

On Tuesday, members of the Ohio State Highway Patrol’s Accident Reconstruction team assisted the sheriff’s office investigation by taking data readings with their equipment.

​According to Collier’s obituary, if you want to help with expenses, donations can be made to the Oliver-Cheek Funeral Home, 420 W. Main St. Ashville 43103.

Online condolences can also be left at olivercheekfuneralhome.com​

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