GREENE COUNTY, Pa. - Police are still investigating the cause of a crash that killed four people and injured four others on Interstate 79 in Greene County Wednesday evening.
State police said an SUV headed northbound crossed the median and went down a steep embankment and into the southbound lanes. There it hit a tow-behind camper and a motorcycle, police said.
The driver of the motorcycle, 47-year-old Michael Cohen, of Ontario, Canada, was killed in the crash. A passenger, 48-year-old Sandra Cohen, was hurt and taken to Ruby Memorial Hospital with serious injuries.
The driver of the SUV, 18-year-old Cullin Frazer, and two passengers, Benjamin Hardy and Byron Kerr, both 18, were killed.
A friend of several of the victims said he saw the teens shortly before the crash. He said Kerr was the type of person that could make anyone smile.
"He was a good kid. He could always make you laugh. I wish he was here right now. If you were down, he could bring you right out of it," said friend Billy Barnhart.
Three others inside of the SUV were hurt and also taken to Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown. Justin Gillogly, 16, Tommy Miller, 17, and 18-year-old Joseph Lilley, all suffered minor injuries.
Miller was released from the hospital on Thursday. He wrote on his Facebook page, "I came out with just a few injuries. This is not fair. Forever in my heart boys."
Channel 11’s Cara Sapida talked to Miller, who said the group had just left Walmart and were headed to Washington to get food.
Miller said they were listening to music and all of a sudden they were in the median. He said someone screamed to get the car back on the road and they flipped.
“When we came back onto the road, we flipped over the thing and the next thing I remember I was climbing out of the back of the car. I didn’t lose consciousness, I just closed my eyes,” Miller said.
Miller told Sapida that seconds before the crash he put his seat belt on. He also said he knew right away that three of his friends died.
“I was emotionless and in shock. I couldn’t cry, and couldn’t even yell or scream. I couldn’t do anything. I was just standing there,” Miller said. “There was nothing we could do so me and my buddy crawled out the back."
State police told Miller’s mother that he likely saved Gillogly’s life. Miller, who is 6 feet 5 inches tall, protected Gillogly, who is much smaller, while sitting in the back seat.
“As many times as I’ve seen that kid in the back seat, he’s never put his seat belt on ever. I asked him what possessed him to put it on and he said, ‘I don’t know. We were getting on the highway and I put it on,” Miller’s mother, Jamie Snyder, said.
A four-mile section of I-79 was closed for hours as emergency crews worked to clear the scene.
Investigators are still working to determine what caused the driver of the SUV to lose control.
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