A Mechanicsburg man and his young child were killed in a two-vehicle crash in southern Union County on Sunday night that sent his wife and their infant daughter to the hospital.
The Union County Sheriff’s Office reported that Joshua Fraley, 30, and son Easton Fraley, 2, of Mechanicsburg were killed in the crash shortly after 8 p.m. on Ohio 161 near Ohio 38. Olivia Aicher, 17, of Dublin, was in a separate vehicle and was also killed in the crash.
Two other members of the Fraley family were also injured in the crash. Joshua’s wife, Jennifer,was listed in serious condition at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center on Monday. The couple’s other young child, 4-month-old Payton, was taken by ambulance to Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus.
An 18-year-old in Aicher’s vehicle was also taken by helicopter to Grant Medical Center in Columbus, according to information from WBNS television.
Ken Jewell, owner of ASE Feed and Supply Store in Plain City, said Joshua Fraley’s death is a significant loss for both the business and the farming community.
Fraley began working with the company while still attending classes at Wilmington College and has worked for ASE Seed in a variety of roles for about 10 years. The business has a small staff, and most employees have been together for three or more years, so his death has been hard on the employees, Jewell said.
Jewell described Fraley as a self-starter who was heavily involved in the farming community and could do almost any job at ASE.
“He touched a lot of lives in this community,” Jewell said.
Jewell said aside from his work at ASE, Fraley also farmed and worked as a seed dealer to support his family, which often meant long days.
Fraley always had a good attitude and enjoyed working in agriculture.
“He didn’t know a stranger,” Jewell said.
Fraley was an important part of the business, and Jewell said the company will help support the family in any way it can.
Autopsies on the deceased will be performed by the Franklin County Coroner’s Office. Details of the accident are still being investigated, but information from the Union County Sheriff’s Office shows the crash involved a 2002 Pontiac Bonneville and a 2005 Mercury Mountaineer.
Several agencies are investigating the crash, including the Union County Sheriff’s Office, the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office, the Logan County Sheriff’s Office, and the Hardin County Sheriff’s Office. The Ohio State Highway Patrol is also providing assistance.
Ohio 161 was closed for several hours while the crash scene was being investigated and cleared.