More Details Emerge In Deadly Weekend Accident In Raleigh
Posted November 3, 2003 4:09 a.m. EST
RALEIGH, N.C. — A man who crashed his truck into a group of people who stopped to help others hurt in an accident on Saturday appeared in court Monday. Larry Robert Veeder has charged with DWI and six counts of involuntary manslaughter. As he made his court appearance, more details about Veeder and the victims of the accident are starting to emerge.
Authorities say several Good Samaritans had stopped to help two people involved in an earlier accident near Nowell Road Saturday night. They rescued one man from his SUV and laid him flat in the road to protect his back. One witness told WRAL he looked away for a second and when he looked back, the two men standing next to him were being pulled beneath a speeding van.
"When I'm sleeping, when I'm praying, I keep on seeing those people go under the truck and fly out. I just can't forget that scene. It was absolutely horrendous," witness Faris Naji said.
"If you can imagine the most intense pain, it's got to be losing a child," said Philip Myers, Nolan's father.
Victims' families are slowly making the pilgrimage to the crash site. The family of Campbell University freshman Nolan Myers said he was always a Good Samaritan.
"It's so in character what he was doing and he died with purpose. What an honorable way to go," Myers said.
Myers was not the only fatality in the accident. Bryan Tutor, 29, of Coats, leaves behind a wife and 5-month-old baby. Tutor went to the N.C. State/Virginia game at Carter-Finley Stadium with his friend, 28-year-old Dennis Bowes, who also died in the wreck.
Christopher Clemmons, 41, lived down the road from the crash site. Family members say, after the first accident, he went to see if he could help. The other two victims are Robert and Jean Marie Alfaro, who were in town visiting from the Charlotte area.
When Veeder made his first appearance in court Monday, he was surrounded by deputies.
"This is one of those cases where he needs to be as protected as he can from other individuals who might obviously have some malice as a result of what happened," said Rick Gammon, Veeder's attorney.
Veeder's friends at a local restaurant and bar where he hangs out have vowed to support him through the tragedy. They even put a sign up, asking others to do the same.
"I don't think anyone could have too much to drink, get behind the wheel, wipe out six people and walk away from that unharmed. He's going to have to live with that for the rest of his life," said Joe Rimbey, Veeder's friend.
Myers' family members are using their faith to get them through this ordeal. They said they saved money for their son's college education and that they would be willing to donate to get Veeder into alcohol treatment.
"He's clearly on a path to his own destruction, but there are ways to stop that and to stop him from hurting anybody else and that would be to go to treatment," said Terrie Myers, Nolan's mother.
Veeder has a long list of driving-related charges dating back to 1990. He was convicted on three of those charges.