West Jordan school teacher killed in Wyoming crash

Local News

WEST JORDAN, Utah (ABC4) – A Utah school is mourning the death of one of its teachers after a deadly crash in Wyoming.

On July 14, Wyoming Highway Patrol reports two vehicles collided head-on along US 30 west of Kemmerer, Wyoming, at around 2 p.m.

Authorities say a westbound Mazda attempted to pass a semi-tractor trailer but failed to see an oncoming Toyota.

While both drivers tried to avoid collision by moving toward the roadway’s shoulder, the vehicles collided.

Wyoming Highway Patrol has identified the driver of the Mazda as 55-year-old Wendy Stapel of West Jordan. She was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash and was taken to a nearby medical center.

Stapel succumbed to her injuries, according to WHP.

A 27-year-old Kearns woman and three juveniles were also in Stapel’s vehicle. All were properly restrained and taken to a nearby hospital for injuries sustained in the crash.

The driver of the Toyota has been identified as a 39-year-old Richmond, Utah, man. He was also wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash and was flown by helicopter to the University of Utah for his injuries. A 37-year-old Richmond woman, a 37-year-old Salt Lake City woman, and two juveniles were also in the Toyota. They were transported to area hospitals.

The conditions of the passengers in the Mazda and the occupants of the Toyota are unknown at this time.

Stapel was a 5th-grade teacher at Mountain Shadows Elementary School in West Jordan, according to a letter sent to the school’s families.

“It is with great sadness that we inform you about the passing of a beloved Mountain Shadows Elementary 5th-grade teacher,” the letter reads. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to Ms. Stapel’s family, students, and friends at this very difficult time.”

The letter goes on to offer parents and families tips on helping a child experiencing grief. Yellow ribbons have been placed along the school’s fence in Stapel’s memory.

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