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3 dead, dozens injured in pile-up on Indiana tollway


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A man from Chicago’s Beverly neighborhood was one of three people killed in Tuesday’s crash on Interstate 94 near LaPorte, Ind.

dalrympleJerry Dalrymple, 65, was on his way to his family’s cottage in Laporte when his car was rear-ended by a semi-truck,  family members said.

His dog was also killed in the crash.

“He was the most compassionate, caring, loving person,” his oldest daughter Laura Kelly told WGN-TV.

Dalrymple was a high school band director for many years before switching to banking, but he continued playing the organ every Sunday at his South Side church.

He leaves behind a wife, four children and four grandchildren.

The site of the fatal, roughly 50-vehicle pile-up in Indiana is now clear.

Crews worked through the night in frigid temperatures, and removed the final pieces of mangled wreckage from the eastbound lanes of I-94 near Michigan City around 9 a.m. Friday.

Sudden, whiteout conditions caused the massive pile-up that killed a man from Chicago, and a couple from Michigan. Around 20 others were injured. But, Indiana State Police say their investigation will take several weeks or months to complete.

First responders talked about their rescue efforts Friday.

“He was encased in semis. He was on top of a car. I won’t get into the graphics of it, but I think it took us about two hours to get him out, and I kept apologizing to him. I told him, I said, ‘Jeff, I says you’re making us work for our money tonight,” said Mick Pawlik, Coolspring Fire Chief.

The Indiana Department of Transportation says it salted the area just 20 minutes before the crash, and conditions didn’t call for a shutdown.

EMS crews say the scene was devastating and unlike anything they had seen before.  They say the images from the pile-up will remain with them forever.

The names of the three victims in the I-94 crash in Indiana have been released.

LaPorte County Coroner John Sullivan says husband and wife, Thomas and Marilyn Wolma, 67-years-old and 65-years-old, from Grand Rapids Michigan were killed.

The other fatality was Jerry Dalrymple, 65, from Chicago. He was headed to Laporte to visit relatives when he was killed. Jerry was pronounced dead at the scene. His dog also died in the crash.

They were all riding in cars.

Twenty people were injured in the crash and 17 of those people were taken to Franciscan St. Anthony Hospital in Michigan City.

Many of the victims were pulled from mangled cars wedged under trucks.

Two of the people who were injured are in critical conditions. Their names are Henry Imboden, 79, from Merrillville and Jeffery Renelle, 48, from Ada, Mich.

At least one paramedic was injured at the crash scene, another one suffered hypothermia.

The Laporte County coroner says the crash was the worst he’s seen in his entire career.

And, he says it’s a miracle more people weren’t killed.

Coolspring Fire Chief Mick Pawli spoke about the fatal I-94 pileup in Indiana, saying “This will live with us forever.”

It’s been a day of extreme activity at the Franciscan St. Anthony Health Center in Michigan City Indiana.  A total of 13 patients were transported to the trauma center from the multi car crash on I94 this afternoon.   

Rescue crews were fighting both the clock and temperature, with badly injured patients at risk of hypothermia as they waited to be cut out of their vehicles.

Of the patients taken to St. Anthony, 8 arrived in fair condition, and are now said to be improving.

“We ultimately saw 13 patients, four had only minor injuries,” Said Dr. Jim Callaghan, “one patient came to us in very critical condition and passed away shortly after arrival, unfortunately.”

Three people are confirmed dead and dozens of others were injured in a multi vehicle accident on Interstate 94 this afternoon.

The accident happened around 2pm and has shut down the east bound lanes near mile marker 36 near U.S. 421 near Michigan City, Ind.

According to the Indiana State Police, preliminary investigation indicates approximately 15 tractor-trailers and approximately 15 passenger vehicles and pickup trucks were involved in this incident.

Michael Sherrod arrived on the scene shortly after the accident, “there were people that got out of there cars just a couple people, not a lot of them.  I just seen screaming and rambling.”

Police say  snow, cold and wind have caused white out conditions and are asking motorists to stay of the Interstate, specifically from Michigan City east to the Michigan state line.

Indiana Department of Transportation says cleanup in underway and they are looking to re-open the Eastbound lanes by midnight.

Michigan City Police Lt. Jeff Ramion talks about fatal I-94 crash in Indiana

Two people are confirmed dead in a multi vehicle accident on Interstate 94 this afternoon.