Local News

Raleigh groom killed on wedding day

Posted September 12, 2009 4:49 p.m. EDT
Updated September 13, 2009 1:22 p.m. EDT

— A Raleigh man headed to breakfast with his groomsmen on his wedding day was killed after being ejected from the car he was riding in, according to Father Salvatore Busichio, who planned to officiate the wedding Saturday.

Christopher Raynor, 28, of 9240 Bruckhaus St., was scheduled to marry Karen Taylor at Raleigh's Cathedral of the Sacred Heart Church.

Raynor was riding in the backseat of his best man's car when another driver ran a red light and crashed into them at the intersection of Lumley and Westgate roads around 7:30 a.m., authorities said. A third vehicle then ran over Raynor, according to a police report.

Police charged James Howard Early, of 17 Lynwood Road in Asheville, with a red light violation and misdemeanor death by motor vehicle.

Police have not determined if Raynor was wearing his seat belt. He was taken to WakeMed where he later died.

"Guests were coming to the wedding that had no idea what had happened," Busichio said. "It was my unhappy duty to have to tell people the groom was killed."

Family and friends gathered together and held a memorial service Saturday at the church. Busichio said the bride spoke to the audience and told them she will always love Raynor.

"The (bride) got into the pulpit after the service was over. She was explaining her feelings, and she was very gallant, very brave," Busichio said. "She thanked everyone for coming and said she realized by being there (that) it had strengthened her and her love for him."

Busichio remembered Raynor and Taylor as "one of the nicest couples I've ever known. They were meant for each other."

Groomsman Andrew Bowman called Raynor as "a special person."

"I know my life is better because of him," he said.