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Authorities ID man killed in fiery Johnston County wreck

Posted February 5

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— Authorities on Friday afternoon identified the man killed in a fiery wreck near Clayton several hours earlier.

According to the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, Michael Clements, 23, of Brookmont Drive in Clayton, lost control of a white Acura sedan Friday morning while traveling south near the 1700 block of Castleberry Road.

When the car left the road, it struck a tree and caught fire, troopers said.

A passing driver saw the car and called local authorities at about 7:20 a.m.

Investigators said they believe that speed was a factor in the crash.

Clements was a member of the heavy metal band, Valleys, which was set to release an new album, "Experiment One: Asylum" on Feb. 12.

Band manager Alex McGinnis said next week's release party will now also serve as a memorial for Clements.

"The show is still going to happen. It's also going to be our tribute to Mikey," he said. Now that he's left we all feel an empty spot it our heart."

McGinnis said the band performed only a few hours before the accident.

"Afterward, Mikey was a little heated," he said. "He just went off on his own to drive and kind of clear his head."

McGinnis said Clements was the band's bright light, always looking at the positive.

"He was always the one to pull us out of the hole," he said.

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