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Lawmaker's brother killed in Spring Lake wreck

Posted November 7, 2011

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— The brother of state Rep. Marvin Lucas, D-Cumberland, died Monday morning when the tractor he was driving was hit by a tanker truck, authorities said.

Robert Cecil Lucas, 78, was pulling out of Deerfield Drive onto Bragg Boulevard when the southbound tanker hit his tractor from behind, authorities said.

Marvin Lucas said his older brother always drove the tractor from his home in the Deerfield subdivision to the family farm a half-mile away.

Spring Lake wreck Man killed in wreck on way to work on family farm

"I don't know what he intended to do this morning, but that's what he loved to do is piddle around on the farm," Lucas said.

"He'd go up there and grow veggies and fruit and everything," said Janice Lucas, Robert Lucas' wife. "He goes up there constantly on the tractor to mend the land."

Robert Lucas, a retired social worker, no longer had a driver's license, his relatives said.

Witnesses gave contradictory statements as to whether the driver of the tanker, Christopher Andrew Grindle, 39, or Robert Lucas went through a red light before the crash.

Spring Lake police said the crash remains under investigation.

The wreck closed southbound Bragg Boulevard for two hours, and authorities set up a detour using Nursery Road and Vass Road.

15 Comments

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  • btneast Nov 9, 2011

    However the laws ar antiquated, they don't have to have tail lights, or turn signals. A lot of wreck have been caused by tractors and other equipment not having tail lights or making a left turn and a motorist is passing

    ...isn't that what hand signals are for?

  • mamos68 Nov 8, 2011

    I live in Deerfield, and I exit with that stoplight every day. I can't say what happened in this particular instance, but I see everything from large trucks to small cars blow through that stop light like it isn't even there on a fairly regular basis. I look both ways, even when I have the green light because I've almost been plowed on more than one occasion by some fool thinking its a raceway doing at least 60 in a 45 mph zone.

  • Rebelyell Nov 8, 2011

    Bragg Blvd. should be called Hell's Highway. It's a contest to pass all the road blockers, passing lane is always blocked, lots of unsafe vehicles and crazy drivers. It takes forever to get through all that mess, but there is no alternative.

  • pappy1 Nov 7, 2011

    The relationship of the deceased to a person of some notariety is of news interest. This is particularly true when one considers he is the brother of a former mayor of Spring Lake, and he was killed in Spring Lake. RIP, sir. Prayers to you and your family Mr. Lucas.

  • dollibug Nov 7, 2011

    A blind man was actually trying to drive.....May this man rest in peace....

  • davisgw Nov 7, 2011

    Jellybeanz: all farm equipment has a "right" to be on the highway. However the laws ar antiquated, they don't have to have tail lights, or turn signals. A lot of wreck have been caused by tractors and other equipment not having tail lights or making a left turn and a motorist is passing. The laws need updating but to many of our legislatures have a farming connection to get it done.

  • jellybeanz Nov 7, 2011

    "Tractors have just as much right on public roads as any other vehicle." They do? I was unaware of this.

  • snookie896 Nov 7, 2011

    braddavis,
    I agree with you. Let us be considerant of the deceased & pray for his "entire" family.

  • computer trainer Nov 7, 2011

    While WRAL does not have much info, WTVD has had since the story first broke this morning: Family members identified the dead man as Robert "Cecil" Lucas. They told ABC11 that Lucas was 78 and legally blind. He used the tractor to get around because he didn't have a driver license.

    I am sorry for him, but his family did not do him, nor the trucker any favors allowing a blind man to drive a vehicle.

  • davisgw Nov 7, 2011

    I agree that traffic soes not always give farm equipment a decent safety margin but this cuts both ways I have wittnessed many times when people driving farm equipment pull out in front of oncoming traffic. They also travel long distances backing up traffic when they could be considerate and pull onto the shoulder occasionally.

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