A three-vehicle collision on Highway 61 near Red Wing Sunday afternoon claimed the life of a young Winona man and sent five others to the hospital, including the parents of the man who died.
According to the Minnesota State Patrol, Roy Becker, 63, of Blaine, was southbound on Highway 61 near Wacouta Road when he lost control of his semitrailer on the snowy highway, striking a Toyota 4-Runner and a Lincoln Mark LT pickup, which were both traveling north.
Roger Claxton, 58, and Constance Claxton, 72, both of Hastings, were in the Toyota 4-Runner when their vehicle collided with the Lincoln pickup, driven by James Breza, 53, of Winona. Passengers in the pickup were his wife, Sonja Breza, 53, and their son, Justin Breza, 21. Justin died at the scene.
A person close to the Breza family described Justin, who was soon to graduate from Southeast Technical College, as a “sweetheart” and a “well behaved, wonderful kid.”
The Red Wing fire and ambulance department, Lake City Ambulance, and Goodhue County Sheriff’s Department assisted the state patrol at the scene.
Weather conditions were blustery with limited visibility. Heavy snowfall developed across the area late Saturday night into Sunday morning, and the National Weather Service reported snow falling for more than an hour before the accident occurred.
As of Tuesday, Constance Claxton was listed in stable condition at Red Wing Mayo Health System, and James and Sonja Breza were listed in fair condition at St. Marys Hospital in Rochester.