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Man dies after car strikes fire vehicle

March 13, 1997

By BRENDAN KIRBY

Staff Writer

CEARFOSS - A Greencastle, Pa., man died early Wednesday after his car struck a fire company utility truck that was parked along Greencastle Pike.

David Clyde "D.J." Summers Jr., who would have turned 20 today, was pronounced dead at Washington County Hospital at about 1:40 a.m., according to Washington County Deputy Medical Examiner Dr. Howard Weeks.

His grandmother, Carrie Summers, of College Park, Md., said his death was a tremendous shock.

"I was so sorry to hear about him," she said. "He was a wonderful boy. He'll be missed by the whole family."

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Maryland State Police said Summers' 1986 Chevrolet Cavalier struck the rear of a parked 1992 Chevrolet Suburban owned by the Maugansville Volunteer Fire Co.

Fire Chief Phil Ridenour said fire officials had returned to the area to collect hoses and other equipment they had used to battle a tire fire that erupted Tuesday afternoon at 17049 Castle Hill Road.

Maugansville firefighters had pumped water from the Greencastle Pike location just north of Cindy Lane to fight the tire fire on Castle Hill Road.

Ridenour said Capt. Chris Gelwicks was getting something out of the back of the truck when Summers' car came toward him. Ridenour said Gelwicks moved out of the way before the car collided with the truck.

"He's really shaken up over the whole ordeal," he said. "He just as easily could have been hit directly by the vehicle."

Ridenour said the fire company's truck was parked to the right side of the road, but was not completely off the road, because there is no shoulder along that stretch and firefighters did not want to park in the grass. The vehicle's four-way flashers were on at the time, he said.

Ridenour said his men performed emergency first aid on Summers and called for an ambulance.

Cause of death probably was a severe facial cut and a head injury, according to Weeks.

An autopsy will be performed this week in Baltimore to determine the exact cause of death, he said.

"He got out of the car and walked 10 to 15 feet before he keeled over," Weeks said.

Summers was not wearing a seatbelt when the 12:45 a.m. accident occurred, state police said. Alcohol may have contributed to the accident, police said.

Summers, who lived with his parents at 426 Hykes Road, Greencastle, was born in Hagerstown and grew up in the Greencastle area.

A 1995 graduate of Greencastle High School, Summers also graduated from the Franklin County Vo-Tech in Chambersburg, Pa.

Summers, who worked at Hoffman Transport, in Greencastle, enjoyed fishing, hunting and fixing cars.

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