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Published: Monday, 7/31/2006

Car kills Samaritan changing flat tire

SANDUSKY - A Sandusky man was hit and killed yesterday as he attempted to change a flat tire of a minivan that was stranded on State Rt. 2 in Erie County's Margaretta Township, just five miles west of Sandusky, Ohio Highway Patrol officials said.

John A. Reiman, 52, was pronounced dead at the scene by the Erie County coroner after the two-vehicle, two-pedestrian crash that happened about 1:43 p.m., troopers at the Sandusky post said.

Troopers said Mr. Reiman had stopped on westbound Route 2, west of State Rt. 101 to help Thomas Stoll, 37, of Norwalk, Ohio, change a flat tire on his 2005 Chrysler Town & Country minivan. According to troopers, Mr. Reiman did not know Mr. Stoll, but stopped to lend a hand. Inside the minivan were passengers Sara Stoll, 10, and Kaitlyn Stoll, 7.

Troopers said that as the two men were changing the tire, 17-year-old Matthew Jones of Sandusky, driving a 1991 Mercury Tracer west on Route 2, fell asleep at the wheel and drove into the median.

Officials said that he woke up and swerved back onto the roadway and when Mr. Reiman heard the screeching from the oncoming car, he tried to run toward the front of the van, but as he got past the left front corner of the van, he was struck by the car and pushed into the van's fender.

The van rotated clockwise and struck Mr. Stoll, who was standing on the right side of the van as the other car careened off the north side of the road and came to a stop.

Neither of the girls in the van was injured and Mr. Stoll received nonlife-threatening injuries. He was taken to Firelands Regional Medical Center by Margaretta Township EMS. Young Jones, who was wearing a seat belt, was not injured.

No charges have been filed and the crash remains under investigation, state highway officials said.

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