Father, son die in Pa. wreck

April 20, 1998|By DON AINES

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - A father and his young son, killed in a four-vehicle accident Saturday in Antrim Township, will be buried together Wednesday in Cedar Hill Cemetery, Greencastle.

Mark Donald Hykes, 34, of 11112 Welsh Run Road, Greencastle, and his 4-year-old son Daniel Mark Hykes were pronounced dead at the scene of the 8:09 p.m. accident at the intersection of Pa. 16 and Hill Road. Franklin County Coroner Kenneth L. Peiffer said both died of blunt force trauma to the head.

"He was the most devout family man who loved God that ever existed," said Jennifer L. Hykes, Mark Hykes' wife and Daniel's mother. The couple was married for six years and have another son, Noah Aaron Hykes.

"There was not a better man on Earth. He treated my daughter like a queen and he was the best father ever," said Barbara Ann Baker, Mark Hykes' mother-in-law and Daniel's grandmother.


"The day he died, my grandson who died with him stayed with him all day," Baker said.

The father was mowing the lawn earlier in the day as Daniel Hykes followed along with a toy mower, she said.

Pennsylvania State Police said the father and son were stopped at the intersection facing west on Pa. 16 when Hykes' 1991 Ford Escort was hit from behind by a westbound 1988 Chevy van driven by Thomas Arthur Potter, 57, of Greencastle. The report said the impact forced the Escort into the eastbound lane, where it collided with a 1995 Nissan Pathfinder driven by Robert Ernest Branco, 48, of Dumfries, Va.

The second impact sent the Escort into a 1972 pickup driven by Robert J. Woodward, 42, of Mercersburg, which was sitting at the stop sign on Hill Road, according to police.

Potter was treated and released from Washington County Hospital, according to police. Branco suffered minor injuries and was released from Waynesboro Hospital, the report said.

Woodward was not hurt, police said.

Peiffer said Mark and Daniel Hykes were wearing seat belts, but "there was a tremendous impact on that car" from the larger Pathfinder.

Jennifer Hykes said her husband and son had driven to the store to buy a newspaper.

The investigating officer, Trooper Randy Kane, said no charges had been filed Sunday night and the accident was still under investigation.

"Mark was a fine young Christian man ... It was known to everyone," the Rev. J. Herman Fisler said Sunday evening of Hykes, who was the Sunday School treasurer and head usher at the Grace Bible Church.

"We really just committed the service to reflect on him and his life and that of Daniel," Fisler said. He said members of the congregation came forward and spoke about the father and son, or about similar losses they suffered in their lives.

"Other than your faith in the Lord, there is no preparation for this," Fisler said.

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