Hagerstown woman dies in I-81 accident

December 27, 2001

Hagerstown woman dies in I-81 accident


A 21-year-old Hagerstown mother of two died Sunday evening after losing control of her car on Interstate 81.


Dawn Lou-Ann Adams was driving a 1997 Kia Sportage south on I-81 in the left lane near the three-mile marker when a Toyota 4Runner merged into her lane just after 4 p.m., West Virginia State Police said.

Adams swerved left and right, leaving the road, and eventually drove her car into the median. Her vehicle overturned several times and she was thrown through the windshield, police said.

Her body landed in the left lane of northbound I-81 and then slid into the right lane.

She was then hit by a northbound 2001 Ford Explorer driven by Garnie Kidwell, 51, of Colorado Springs, Colo.

Upon impact, Kidwell's brakes locked and his vehicle slid down into the median and spun 180 degrees before coming to a stop, police said.


Kidwell then drove out of the median and back up to the northbound lanes of I-81.

Adams was declared dead at the scene by Coroner Sandra Brining.

No charges were filed, police said.

The driver of the Toyota 4Runner did not stop, and it is unknown if the driver was aware an accident occurred, police said.

Police said Adams was not wearing her seat belt. She had two passengers in her vehicle, her 1-year-old son, Aleczander Adams, and her 5-month-old daughter, Alexis.

Both were in child safety seats.

Aleczander received facial injuries in the accident, possibly from unsecured items like a 19-inch color television flying about, police said.

Alexis was found in her car seat in the cargo area of the Sportage, upright and facing the rear. It is unknown if that was where her mother positioned her or if the car seat originally was secured to the back seat and shifted when the vehicle overturned, police said.

She was not injured.

Both children were being cared for Sunday evening by their grandfather, David Chamberlin of Hagerstown.

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