Three people were killed when their car left the road, struck a tree and landed in a ditch Thursday night near Granite Falls, Washington.
The crash wasn’t discovered until Friday morning.
The names of the victims have not been released, but the man and two women who were killed were deeply loved by their families. Snohomish County Sheriff’s Lt. Rodney Rochon held the mother of one of the women after he gave her the terrible news at the scene of the crash.
This photo both breaks and warms my heart. This mother just learned her daughter was one of three killed in a crash on...Posted by Joanna Small on Friday, March 11, 2016
“I’ve had other fatalities, and yes, you have damage, but this one, the car is considerably smaller than what its original configuration was,” Rochon said.
Rochon said the car was so hidden, it wasn’t discovered until Friday morning by a father who was walking his son to school. It was so crushed, it required shutting down Mountain Loop Highway and using the Jaws of Life to extract the people inside.
During the road closure, Jerome Kummerfeldt, who lives on the other side of the crash and was waiting for it to clear, said sadly, he is used to this.
Kummerfeldt says years ago, his neighbor’s husband was killed in a one-car crash that was camouflaged by the woods as well.
“Just went off the road, and they didn’t find him until the next day,” he said.
Lt. Rochon is convinced that a quicker response, in this case, wouldn’t have mattered.
"Solely based on the observation, it was a non-survivable crash,” Rochon said.
The Washington State Department of Transportation said since March 2013, there have been 39 wrecks on the 20-mile stretch of road leading out of Granite Falls.
Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com