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Sports writer killed in accident

August 11, 1998|By CLYDE FORD

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A sports writer for The Journal in Martinsburg died Monday afternoon in a car accident on Interstate 70 in Frederick County, Md.

Desmond White, 25, worked as a sports reporter at the newspaper for about six months, said Journal Editor Maria Lorensen.

White, formerly of Glen Burnie, Md., died of injuries sustained in the 3:15 p.m. accident on westbound I-70 east of Md. 75 during a downpour.

White was driving east when his car went into the median, began to spin and then careened into the westbound lanes, according to Maryland State Police in Frederick.

The car traveled into the path of a truck driven by Charles Thomas Hughey, 54, of Orlando, Fla., who was not injured.

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White was trapped in his vehicle before being freed by rescuers, police said.

He was taken to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

Lorensen said the tightly knit newspaper staff was trying to come to grips with White's death.

"People are real upset. They just got really close to Desmond. He was just a genuinely good person," Lorensen said.

Lorensen said a staff meeting was held Tuesday afternoon for the grieving reporters, editors and photographers. White's family stopped by the office.

"He got to do something he was interested in and was happy with what he was doing," Lorensen said.

White had been a technical writer before joining the newspaper.

"He was so excited to get a job being a sports writer. I remember at the end of his job interview he said, 'I can't believe that you pay people to do this.' That kind of gives you an indication that this was something that he loved," Lorensen said.

He recently covered Jefferson High School's win at the West Virginia high school baseball championship. He covered sports from Little League baseball to high school athletics, she said.

Journal sports writer Robert Stocks said he will miss White's sense of humor.

"He was one of the most laid-back people I've ever met. He had a great sense of humor. It was fun being around him at work. It was fun being around him, period," Stocks said.

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