Firefighters rush to help the victims of a deadly crash on Interstate 94 in Hudson, Wis.
HUDSON, Wis. (KMSP) -
A crash involving a semi-trailer and a car killed two teenagers from New Richmond, Wis., and shut down eastbound Interstate 94 near Hudson on Monday afternoon.
According to the Wisconsin State Patrol, the crash happened on I-94 near Exit 3 at about 1:30 p.m.
The St. Croix County sheriff's office says a 2000 Dodge Durango rear-ended a semi that had stopped in heavy traffic. The SUV was carrying four teenagers, all entering their senior year at New Richmond (Wis.) High School.
The front-seat passenger, 17-year-oldJosh Goodrich, and a backseat passenger, 16-year-oldJordan Johnson, were killed.
Investigators say Johnson was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash. Everyone else was belted.
The driver, 17-year-old Zachary Zajec, is still listed in critical condition at Regions Hospital, where he is being treated for injuries to his head, chest and extremities.
Another passenger in the back seat, 17-year-old Tom Wanless, had unspecified non-life threatening injuries.
New Richmond High School athletic director Casey Eckardt said all four boys were going to be seniors and were involved in athletics. Goodrich was a hockey player and Johnson was described as the "anchor of the offensive line" in his role as the football team's center.
Eckardt said all four were good kids and exceptional students who were set to start their senior year in just a few weeks.
"They were, by and large, relatively quiet kids, but they certainly had a lot of friends and were involved in all sorts of activities here at school," Eckardt said.
Therapists and counselors will be available to students and community members between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at the school.
The driver of the semi, operated by Keep N On Trucking, was identified as 34-year-old Paul A. Davis, of Cadott, Wis. He was not injured.
Eastbound traffic was rerouted off of I-94 at Wisconsin Highway 35 to allow emergency personnel and helicopters to respond to the scene.