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Published: Thursday, 3/10/2011 - Updated: 5 years ago

3 killed in Airport Hwy. crash

Baby survives C-section birth; mother dies


Three people were killed in a head-on collision on Airport Highway Wednesday. Two others were injured in the aftermath. Three people were killed in a head-on collision on Airport Highway Wednesday. Two others were injured in the aftermath.
Born by emergency Cesarean section, a baby girl clinging to life at Toledo Children's Hospital is the only survivor of a horrific head-on collision on Airport Highway Wednesday.

Late Wednesday night, the unnamed little girl, the daughter of Dawon Fisher, 27, who was killed in the crash, was listed in critical condition.

Miss Fisher, who was eight months pregnant, was eastbound on Airport Highway near Swan Creek Metropark in a gray Honda Accord at about 1:50 p.m. when her vehicle collided head-on with a westbound minivan driven by Norbert Thiel, 80, a retired Toledo police lieutenant. His wife, Nancy Thiel, 76, was a passenger in the van. Mr. and Mrs. Thiel were pronounced dead at the scene, said Steve Kahle, a Lucas County coroner's investigator.

Miss Fisher, who lived in the 6000 block of Red Oak Drive, was talking on her cell phone to her boyfriend at the time of the crash, said Tonya Young, 46, who saw the crash from her apartment at Country Trail Estates, 4412 Airport Highway. The boyfriend heard the crash and came to the scene, Ms. Young said. She met and spoke with the boyfriend when he arrived.

Ms. Young said Miss Fisher's car went left of the center line, striking the van.

She and others tried to console the boyfriend before he left in the ambulance carrying Miss Fisher.

She was taken to the University of Toledo Medical Center, the former Medical College of Ohio, where an emergency Cesarean section was performed. The baby girl was then taken to Toledo Children's Hospital.

A maroon Buick LaSabre rear-ended the van, police said.

Leon Brazill, 32, of Dolton Ill., and Trelane Grayson, 33, of Lynwood, Ill., who were traveling behind the Thiels' Caravan, were taken to the UT Medical Center and treated for nonlife threatening injuries, according to Toledo police.

Dawon Fisher Dawon Fisher
A mother to two children, ages 4 and 6, Miss Fisher was to soon host a baby shower. She hadn't decided on a name for the baby, said Miss Fisher's cousin Antoinette Tate, 23, of Toledo. Miss Fisher worked at the Northwest Ohio Developmental Center in the therapeutic program.

"She was a good mom," Miss Tate said. "She was funny, a great person, easy to get along with, always happy. She was a good listener and gave good advice. She was always there for me."

Mr. Thiel retired from the Toledo police department about 28 years ago, said Dick Parton, who retired as a Toledo police sergeant 26 years ago. The two worked out of the Scott Park precinct together for several years. Mr. Thiel joined the department around 1955 where he worked for many years as a detective and was later promoted to lieutenant, Mr. Parton said.

Former Toledo police Chief John Mason said Mr. Thiel was a "great command officer and good supervisor. He was very efficient and dedicated. No matter what was asked of him, he did that and probably a little more too."

Mr. Mason served as chief from 1980-87.

Mr. Thiel also spent several years with the Toledo Police Command Officer's Association as a board member.

"He did a professional, first-class job there," Mr. Mason said.

Mr. Thiel, Mr. Parton, and Mr. Mason played golf together in a retired police officer's league for many years.

Mrs. Thiel was also a retired city of Toledo employee, Mr. Mason said.

Sabrina Scott was turning into the apartment complex, on her way home from work, Wednesday afternoon when she saw the crash. She immediately called 911.

"I thought, 'Oh my god.' " she said.

It is unknown if anyone involved in the crash was wearing a seat belt at the time of the accident or if the rain Wednesday was a contributing factor. Airport Highway between Wenz Road and Sugar Creek Lane was closed for several hours while police investigated the crash.

Contact Taylor Dungjen at:


or 419-724-6054.

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