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Wilson man killed in school bus wreck

Posted September 19, 2011

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— A 70-year-old man died in a head-on collision with a school bus Monday morning in Wilson, police said.

Robert Lee Hills, of Wilson, died at the scene of the wreck at Forest Hills Road and Cardinal Drive, Sgt. John Slaughter said. The bus driver, monitor and five Fike High School students were checked out at local hospital as a precaution and released.

Police said Hills' Lincoln Town Car crossed the center line of Forest Hills Road and struck the northbound school bus.

John Carpenter, who was taking his daughter school, said he slowed down when he saw the Town Car swerving erratically shortly before the wreck.

"It wasn't like when you see someone drop something, and then they drift a little bit and then try to correct themselves. But this one didn't correct. He kept coming over," Carpenter said. "Then it was like a bomb went off. There was stuff all over the place, pieces of car all over the road."

Preliminary reports indicate that speed and alcohol were not factors in the wreck.

School bus wreck kills one School bus wreck kills one

"It's a 35 mph zone through here, but unfortunately, when you have a vehicle as big as a school bus, you can have this result," Slaughter said.

He said that police traffic investigators are still looking into what caused Hills to cross the center line. A medical exam will likely be performed to see if he had any underlying health issues.

Hills leaves behind a wife.

87 Comments

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  • lalexander826 Sep 21, 2011

    Mr. Hills was my husband's great uncle. I never got the opportunity to meet him. I came to this site to read the article about the accident and had the "pleasure" of reading the comments as well. The man had a defibrillator and could very well have had a heart attack. From witnesses at the scene, he was slumped down in the vehicle before the crash ever happened. It breaks my heart that there are people out there so judgemental and heartless. Nonetheless, everyone have a blessed day :)

  • wildcat Sep 20, 2011

    PS.We are all going to get old one day.
    callme4avon

    thank you. Many cannot see that. I want to drive for as long as I can. But if "I" realize there is a problem with "ME, I will gladly lay my keys down and hope my grown children, church member or neighbor would take me wherever I need to be. But don't count on it.

  • callme4avon Sep 19, 2011

    who is going to take the elderly around when they can't drive, no one. PS.We are all going to get old one day.

  • nomorethanthat Sep 19, 2011

    a DRIP of CARAMEL: I stand corrected now that I see the new photos of the bus. When I posted before they were not available and it appeared to be not fully straight on. I am glad that no fire ensued. May the driver of the bus and children on the bus recover from any emotional trauma that they perhaps have taken from this accident.

  • dae66 Sep 19, 2011

    rescuefan: "I love the people who use this excuse to post insensitive comments on a news story."

    Yes, I'm so insensitive that my son and I pulled over to help and prayed for the victims this morning in Wilson. Excuse? Fact.

  • IAMAmerican Sep 19, 2011

    He may have had a heart attack or stroke, poor man.

  • mjlt3 Sep 19, 2011

    My prayer goes out to the family but his license should have been taken 5 yrs ago!

  • #24WarrensABeast Sep 19, 2011

    """To say that both vehicles were doing 35mph doesn't really describe how much force was involved in the collision. They approached each other at an aggregate speed of 70mhp which is better than 90 ft/second. Consider also the effect of each vehicle's weight in the calculation of force expended at impact. If this had been a straight on collision, the Lincoln would have been crumpled.

    My heartfelt feelings go out to all connected with this accident."""
    nomorethanthat
    GOLO member since February 4, 2010
    September 19, 2011 3:01 p.m.

    This was a head-on collison!

    My condolences to the family of Mr. Hills, God Bless!

  • nomorethanthat Sep 19, 2011

    To say that both vehicles were doing 35mph doesn't really describe how much force was involved in the collision. They approached each other at an aggregate speed of 70mhp which is better than 90 ft/second. Consider also the effect of each vehicle's weight in the calculation of force expended at impact. If this had been a straight on collision, the Lincoln would have been crumpled.

    My heartfelt feelings go out to all connected with this accident.

  • FromClayton Sep 19, 2011

    "Is there something about a screen name and a keyboard which triggers mindless people?"
    rwest134

    yes it is called anonoymous freedom. If you dont know who a person is you cant hold them accountable for the horrible and mean spirited things they say.

    it also frees me from using spell check or correct grammer.

    weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee freedom!

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