Four injured in Highway 97 head-on crash
May 26,2007 00:00 by Bend_Weekly_News_Sources
Four people were injured, two seriously, Thursday afternoon in a two-vehicle crash on Highway 97 between Grass Valley and Kent. The crash closed a small section of Highway 97 for a few hours during the investigation, and this is a reminder of what Oregon State Police, County Sheriff Departments, and city police departments are attempting to prevent through extra enforcement this Memorial Holiday weekend.

Marlene and Arnold Thomas of San Jose were injured when the driver, Marlene, crossed the centerline of Highway 97 and crashed headon into a pickup towing a fifth-wheel travel trailer - OSP photo 
Lee and Luanne Fulgham of Post Falls were injured when their pickup was hit head-on - OSP photo 
On May 24 at about 4 p.m.. a 2007 Toyota Camry driven by Marlene J. Thomas, 56, from San Jose, California, was northbound on Highway 97 near milepost 39 when it drifted across the centerline into the southbound lane and crashed head-on with a 2002 Ford F350 pickup towing a 27-foot Road Ranger 5th wheel travel trailer.

Marlene Thomas and her husband/passenger, Arnold Thomas, 59, were transported by air ambulance to St. Charles Medical Center in Bend. Marlene Thomas received minor injuries. Arnold Thomas was seriously injured and had to be extricated from the car by personnel from Sherman and Wasco county fire agencies.

The driver of the Ford pickup, Lee Fulgham, 71, from Post Falls, Idaho, received minor injuries and was transported by ambulance to Mid Columbia Medical Center in The Dalles. His passenger, Luanne Fulgham, 69, was seriously injured and initially transported to Mid Columbia Medical Center from where LifeFlight helicopter took her to Legacy Emanuel Hospital in Portland.

It is believe all persons were using safety restraints and airbags deployed.

Oregon State Police troopers from The Dalles Area Command are continuing the investigation to determine the cause. Sherman County Sheriff's Office and ODOT assisted at the scene.

During last year's Memorial Holiday weekend, May 25 – 28, eight people died in four separate fatal traffic crashes on Oregon highways, including four people killed in one crash in Springfield and two bicyclists struck on a Washington County-area road.