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St. Louis wrong-way crash cuts short Illinois musician's dreams

Deaths of young people are hard to reconcile for surviving relatives and friends. A child or young adult claimed by a fatal accident is deprived of the fulfillment of educational, career, financial and relationship goals. An early death erases a person's potential contribution to society.

Grief intensifies when Illinois family members learn a fatality could have been prevented. The actions of a reckless driver cannot be undone, but individuals can be held accountable for wrongdoing and negligence in criminal and civil courts.

A young man living in southwestern Illinois was approaching his 27th birthday with anticipation. Friends said the musician had just secured employment and permission to record a song he had written. The volunteer firefighter was anxious to share the good news with a brother on the way home from overseas military duty.

The musician was killed in a St. Louis collision days before the siblings were set to reunite. Police said a Jeep Cherokee crashed straight on into the victim's Plymouth Breeze. The 26-year-old Jeep driver drove into oncoming traffic - she was traveling the wrong way on Interstate 64.

The fiery crash instantly killed the young man, a Macoupin County native who recently moved to Glen Carbon. The wrong-way driver survived with critical injuries.

Motor vehicle accidents that coincide with bar closing times are often tied to alcohol use. Investigators did not say whether they thought the injured woman was driving while under the influence.

Bars and restaurants also can be blamed for harm including car crashes caused by drunken patrons. Successful dram shop liability claims against alcohol sellers or servers clearly show the establishment neglected to address a patron's intoxication.

Friends of the deceased musician are raising funds to help defray the cost of the victim's funeral.

If you have lost a family member due to someone else's negligence or recklessness, contact an experienced personal injury attorney. These professionals can help you understand your family's options in terms of a possible civil action against those responsible for your loss.

Source:, "'He was so talented': Glen Carbon DJ, musician killed in crash" Beth Hundsdorfer, Aug. 10, 2013

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