Local News

Husband recalls wreck that killed his wife

Posted April 12, 2010
Updated April 13, 2010

— It was a devastating blow for those learning of the loss of 24-year-old Elizabeth “Beth” Ann Mitchell of Selma.

She was killed Thursday afternoon when the car she was riding in was struck head-on by another vehicle on U.S. Highway 301 and Raleigh Road, north of Benson.

“A day doesn’t go by that I don't picture that accident, that I don't see that car coming at us,” said Beth Mitchell’s husband, Troy. “My wife said, ‘Troy grab my arm.’ There was nothing I could do."

Selma woman killed in wreck Selma woman killed in wreck

Troy Mitchell, who was in the driver's seat of the vehicle, said Monday that he knew immediately after the collision that his wife wasn’t OK.

“I do remember looking over there and calling her two or three times, and her not even communicating to me, and I did see her chest go in, go back out, and that was it,” he said. “I knew she was gone.”

Paramedics transported Troy Mitchell to WakeMed, where he is recovering from a broken hip. Relatives and friends helped tell his 5-year-old son and 3-year-old daughter that their mother was dead.

"That was an absolute tragedy but it was something that needed to be done, because it starts the grieving process and the closure process,” said Troy Mitchell’s brother, Scott.

Beth Mitchell was an emergency medical technician. Her former co-workers at Selma EMS gave her son, Nicholas, a party this weekend to celebrate his fifth birthday.

“Somebody told me he (Nicholas) got kind of upset because he said his mama wasn't there to see him open his presents,” Troy Mitchell said.

Funeral services for Beth Mitchell are scheduled for Tuesday at 11 a.m. at Parrish Funeral Home, 1351 Pollock St., Selma.

The driver of the other vehicle was not injured. The investigating state Highway Patrol trooper is expected to consult with the Johnston County District Attorney's Office about potential criminal charges related to the wreck.


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  • treki70 Apr 13, 2010

    I was there for the grave side service. My prayers for the husband,kids and family! Kudos to the EMS and Fire personal that escorted her.

  • Justin T. Apr 13, 2010

    Just think to yourself... only a yellow line that we all agree not to cross separates us from life and death.

  • hmmmmm Apr 13, 2010

    This is so so terribly sad, I know exactly how this man feels, because it happened to me 6 years ago, except it was my husband and I was pregnant with our second child at the time. For those of you that say the news reports that he crossed the center line, not the other driver, keep in mind that the media & the police make mistakes, they said the same thing about my husband, which they later retracted and corrected.

    Instead of looking for sensationalism, lets all pray or send good thoughts to this heartbroken family, they have a long hard road ahead of them.

  • history6557 Apr 13, 2010

    I have never understood why the media cannot let a family affected by tragedy grieve in private. Sometimes, the public's "right to know" seems to exceed just plain common decency and compassion. I also don't need to hear the 911 calls from victims or their families on the evening news. How greedy we the viewers and the media that feeds us have become when it comes to tragedies of others. Both parties are to blame and it really is a sad commentary on what our society has become.

  • lisa4 Apr 13, 2010

    My thoughts and prayers are with this family. May God bless each of you and give you the strength during this difficult time.

  • sjhschik08 Apr 13, 2010

    Mitchell's vehicle was not the one that crossed the center line. The driver of the other car did. I know for fact she had drugs and alcohol in her system and she apologized and told the trooper she was trying to get her cell phone. Had she not been drunk, high and fumbling for her cell phone while driving this probably could have been prevented. RIP Beth!

  • Pseudonym Apr 13, 2010


    Well, not exactly. Maybe if "wreck" wasn't a word I would know he or she meant. I'm also tired of the trials in the media. Let cops do their jobs.

  • nandud Apr 13, 2010

    The N&O reports it was the Mitchells' car that crossed the center line, not the other driver.
    "A 2003 Nissan, driven by Lisa Marie Angeles, 37, of Four Oaks, was traveling south.

    A second vehicle, a 1996 Ford, occupied by the Mitchells was traveling north in the opposite lane of the highway, Brewer said.

    The Ford crossed the centerline and crashed head on into the Nissan, the patrol reported."

    A tragedy all the way around.

  • Sidekick Apr 13, 2010

    It couldn't be more terrible but what if the other driver was distracted due to texting. Hopefully not. But anyone that claims they using a cell phone (other than hands free) is not a bit distracted from driving, is fooling themselves.

    Please, no grammar/spelling edits. We know what the person meant.

  • Pseudonym Apr 13, 2010

    Hate to do this after this story, but these things never fail to annoy me:
    1- Assumptions about drunk driving, texting, etc. Let the LEOs do their jobs. If you want a job as a LEO, get a job as a LEO.
    2- The word is RECKLESS, NOT WRECKLESS. If you got to your destination without bumping into anything, you drove wrecklessly--without a wreck. If you drove while texting, speeding, weaving through traffic, then you drove RECKLESSLY.