Three people died and a 12 year old girl was seriously injured in a two vehicle crash on Highway 96 near Liberty Thursday evening.
Dead are 24 year old Nathaniel Dane Hishke of Milton, Florida, 37 year old Kenneth Lemke, Jr. of Franklin, and 42 year old Debbie Parchman of Alexandria, who was an educational assistant at DeKalb County High School and a former substitute teacher. Parchman's daughter, Haley is now in stable condition at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital in Nashville.
The accident, which occurred a little over a mile from the intersection of Highway 70, was reported to 911 at 4:32 p.m.
Trooper Dewaine Jennings of the Tennessee Highway Patrol says Hishke was driving a 1993 Pontiac Firebird, traveling west on Highway 96 (toward Murfreesboro) when he lost control and slid sideways into the path of a 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee, driven by Parchman, who was traveling east (toward Highway 70). Trooper Jennings says Parchman's vehicle T-boned or struck the Firebird in the passenger side door.
Lemke, who owned the Firebird driven by Hishke, was a front seat passenger of the car. Both had been wearing their seatbelts at the time of the crash.
Parchman's daughter was a front seat passenger of the Cherokee. Neither she nor her mother were wearing their seatlbelts. The preliminary investigation revealed no sign of alcohol as a factor in the crash.
Trooper Jennings says Hishke, Lemke, and Parchman, who died at the scene, had to be extricated from their vehicles, as did the child. The young girl was transported by DeKalb EMS to UMC Medical Center in Lebanon and was later airlifted to Vanderbilt Children's Hospital.
Trooper Jennings says Hishke and Lemke were employed by Ford Roofing company of Franklin, and had visited Lemke's mother, who resides in Alexandria, prior to the accident.
The crash remains under investigation by the Tennessee Highway Patrol's Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT). Others on the scene included Lieutenant Brian Lawson and Troopers Allen England and Jeremy Wilhite of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, members of the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department's Extrication Team, the Liberty Fire Station, DeKalb County Sheriff's Department, and DeKalb EMS.