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Trooper Jonathan Biven
Public Affairs Officer
Kentucky State Police
Post 3, Bowling Green
(270) 782-2010
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Fatal Collision on I-65 in Hart County

Date of News Release: 07/12/2009

(Bowling Green, Ky.) -- Michael R. Pope was traveling northbound on I-65 in the right lane when he noticed traffic stopped due to construction at the 65 mile-marker I-65 northbound. Upon noticing traffic was stopped he immediately changed to the left lane at which time the left lane traffic was also stopped. Mr. Pope"s vehicle struck Misleni Eastman's vehicle in the rear causing Mr. Pope"s vehicle to override the rear portion of Misleni Eastman's vehicle, causing Mr. Pope"s vehicle & Misleni Eastman's vehicle to strike Larry Meherg's vehicle. Mr. Meherg's vehicle then struck Anne Francisco's vehicle at which time Ms. Francisco's vehicle was struck again by Mr. Pope's vehicle & Misleni Eastman's vehicle. Mr. Pope's vehicle & Misleni Eastman's vehicle continued to travel northbound in the emergency lane, coming to final rest after striking the barrier cables. Mr. Meherg's vehicle came to final rest at the northbound right side guardrail. Ms. Francisco's vehicle came to final rest in the left lane northbound. Michael R. Pope was not injured. Misleni Eastman was life flighted to U of L Hospital. The 5 yr old passenger of Misleni Eastman was life flighted to Kosair's Children's Hospital and the 6 yr old passenger (Jonathan Eastman) was pronounced dead at the scene by the Hart County Coroner. Larry Meherg and his passengers (Kirstin Shearer & Aaron Meherg) were transported to TJ Samson Hospital in Glasgow, Ky, and Anne Francisco was treated and released at the scene. The investigation in ongoing.

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