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7 killed in head-on collision in Canada

April 28, 2012 at 9:20 PM   |   Comments

BOYLE, Alberta, April 28 (UPI) -- A pastor and three minors were among seven people killed in a head-on collision between two pickup trucks on a highway in Alberta, Canada, officials said.

The crash on a two-lane portion of Highway 63 near Boyle, about 100 miles north of Edmonton, occurred Friday afternoon, the Edmonton Journal reported.

Police said the children who died were a 2-year-old boy, an 11-year-old girl and a teenage girl.

Family members and friends identified Shannon Wheaton, family ministries pastor at the Fort McMurray-based Family Christian Center, as one of those killed in the crash.

"Pastor Shannon was very family-oriented and did his ministry with children from the depths of his heart," Pastor Robert Parsons said Saturday. "He loved the kids and the kids loved him."

Police said a northbound pickup carrying three people pulled into the oncoming lane to pass and collided head-on with a southbound pickup carrying six passengers.

All three occupants of the northbound truck died, as did four from the other truck, including a teenage girl pulled from the truck by passing motorists and who died at Stollery Children's Hospital in Edmonton.

A 34-year-old man and a 3-year-old boy who survived the crash suffered serious injuries. The boy was in stable condition at Stollery Children's Hospital

The 34-year-old man was in serious but stable condition at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton.

The Journal said the nearly 150-mile stretch of Highway 63 linking the the oil sands with the rest of the province is known as one of the Alberta's deadliest roads.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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