BECKER, Minn. (WCCO) — A teenager running a red light is blamed for a deadly crash Tuesday night on Highway 10 in Sherburne County.
Chuck Maurer, 54, was killed and seven others hurt when a pickup carrying four teens blew through the stoplight at about 8 p.m. at the intersection of County Road 11.
Maurer, from Becker, was driving his two daughters and their friend home from the library when the truck slammed into the driver’s side, spinning their SUV into a pole.
Maurer’s son, Patrick, heard from one of his sisters at the crash scene just moments after the collision.
“I got a phone call saying they had been in an accident,” he said. “It was pretty horrendous.”
His family members were being loaded into a helicopter and an ambulance when Patrick arrived. His father would not survive.
“When you go up on a scene like that, you can’t believe it,” he said. “You can’t believe that’s your family.”
The Minnesota State Patrol says the 18-year-old pickup driver, Deven Garlock of Little Falls, did not appear to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
It may take a couple months to complete the investigation and decide on any charges.
For now, friends and family are trying to focus less on the crash, and more on the man they lost.
“I never met a guy that loved his kids as much as he did,” Patrick said. “He could strike up a conversation with anybody and have it for a good hour if not more. By the end of it, [he’d] become best friends with the person.”
Maurer’s friend, Justin Hattesohl, says he has cleared his schedule for the week to provide support.
“It’s a huge shock to everybody,” Hattesohl said.
Maurer was an Army veteran, and his family is now making funeral arrangements, with the burial planned at the State Veterans Cemetery in Little Falls.