On Tuesday, August 19, at 7:38 a.m., deputies from the Trempealeau County Sheriff’s Office, with assistance from the Arcadia Police Department, responded to a motor vehicle crash involving two vehicles, one of which was reported to be on fire. The location of the crash was on State Highway 95 east of Sorlie Lane in the Town of Arcadia.
Patrice M. Hamerski, 57, of Trempealeau, Donald J. Lewallen, 34, of Augusta, Wis., and Austic C. Lemon, 14, of Augusta, Wis., were all killed in the collision.
The first officer on the scene observed severe damage to both vehicles with one of the vehicles fully engulfed in flames. Two victims were located outside of the vehicles.
Based on preliminary information, a mini-van was traveling west on Highway 95 when it collided with an eastbound SUV. The van and SUV struck head-on in the westbound lane of traffic. After the initial contact, the van came to rest a short distance from the initial point of contact and then caught fire. There were four occupants in the van, driven by Lewallen, two of whom appeared to have been ejected. The remaining two occupants of the van were pronounced dead at the scene by Trempealeau County Coroner Bonnie Kindschy.
Hamerski was trapped in the SUV and was extricated prior to being transported to Tri-County Hospital in Whitehall, Wis. She was pronounced dead at the hospital a short time later.
The crash is currently still under investigation. Roadway conditions were wet and that location had been receiving rainfall just prior to the crash. It is unknown at this time if weather or road conditions were factors in the accident.
Units assisting were the Arcadia police and fire departments, Blair police and fire departments, Arcadia Ambulance, Whitehall Fire Department, Tri-County Ambulance, Medlink Air, and the Trempealeau County Coroner’s Office.