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Florida woman killed in Hwy. 20E semi-truck crash


(updated to correct passenger’s name; OSP says ID was stolen)

A Florida truck driver was killed and her passenger from Texas injured when a semi-truck went off U.S. highway 20E and overturned early Thursday about 70 miles east of Bend, Oregon State Police said Friday. They provided a new identity Saturday for the injured passenger, saying they learned he carried stolen ID.

Troopers were dispatched shortly after midnight Thursday to the crash near milepost 68, in the Brothers area, said OSP Lt. Cari Boyd.

A preliminary investigation found that Angela Abernathy, 47, of Pinellas Park, Florida, was at the wheel of a 2012 Kenworth hauling a 2016 Fona trailer heading east on the highway, Boyd said.

“For unknown reasons,” the lieutenant said, the semi went off the road and crashed, throwing both the driver and passenger, now identified as Billy Wade, 31, of Abilene, Texas.

Abernathy was pronounced dead at the scene, while Wade was flown by air ambulance to St. Charles Bend “with potentially life-threatening injuries,” Boyd said. A house supervisor at the hospital said Wade was in stable condition Saturday.

OSP earlier had identified the injured passenger as Darren Walp of Pennsylvania. Boyd said OSP began receiving calls about the passenger’s true identity on Saturday. He said troopers learned that Wade had stolen Walp’s ID about eight months ago, without Walp’s knowledge.

The crash investigation partially closed the highway for several hours.

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