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Athens woman among 5 killed in fiery collision in Newton County

Photo by Greg Barlow

From The Covington News

COVINGTON, Ga. — The five people killed in a fiery, head-on wreck as they traveled in a van on Georgia Hwy. 142 on April 8 have been identified as residents of Newborn and Athens.

Additionally, the 16-year-old driver of the other vehicle in the collision remained in Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta Thursday in serious condition after he was transported there following the wreck in southeast Newton County.

The victims were identified as Makayla Taylor, 26, of Athens; and passengers Alicia Eisenmann, 55, Darin Quattlebaum, 58, Kelly Pike, 55, and Peggy Wynn, 68, all of Newborn.

All the Newborn residents lived at the same address which is identified online in several listings as an assisted living home on Tanyard Court in Newborn. 

The driver of the truck was not identified because of his status as a juvenile, a spokesperson said.

The victims were traveling in a southbound 2022 Chrysler Pacifica van driven by Taylor and owned by United Cerebral Palsy of Georgia. The van collided with a northbound 2007 Nissan Titan truck on Hwy. 142 about 400 feet north of Adams Circle at about 3 p.m., according to an incident report.

According to the report, the truck crossed the center line about four feet and struck the van head-on.

The impact pushed the van backwards. It rotated counter-clockwise, left the roadway, rolled several times down an embankment and came to rest against some trees about 52 feet from the southbound lane before becoming engulfed in flames, the report stated. 

The truck, meanwhile, continued northbound about 39 feet after the collision and was found turned at an angle facing northwest with the front end in the southbound lane.

All who were in the van were found to be deceased on the scene while the truck driver was transported to Grady, the report stated, adding that alcohol was not a contributing factor.


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