Classmate Wes Crawford Killed in Auto Accident after Leaving Five Year Class Reunion on August 9, 1986
It was the first time that the Rhea County High School Class of 1981 had been together since their graduation ceremony. The class gathered for their 5th year reunion at the Loft in Chattanooga on August 9, 1986. The classmates spent the evening getting reacquainted with one another while enjoying a good meal. Little did they know that the evening would end with the loss of one of the classmates that was present at the reunion. Wesley Crawford was killed in an automobile accident while he was driving back home after the reunion. The accident occurred when Crawford's automobile crashed head-on into another automobile in front of the old Kayo Service Station on Hwy 27 between south Dayton and Graysville. When the new four lane was constructed, this portion of the Hwy became known as Old Hicks Lane. The Kayo Station has closed since then and the building sits empty today. As the classmates began arriving back home, they started receiving the word of Crawford's passing. During high school, Crawford was a member of the varsity football team and after graduation was employed with the La-Z-Boy chair company. Crawford was a member of the Wolf Creek Baptist Church and was an organ donor. He was laid to rest in the Spring City Cemetery.
L-R Front Row- David Pelfrey, John Riley, Bart Hill, Dwayne Hagler, and Tim Davenport,
L-R Second Row- Rhonda Taylor, Charla Bell, Sandy Mitchell, Kathy (Trail) Murphy, Rhonda (Suttles) Davis, Marsha Poe, and Brandi (Shelton) Matlock.
L-R Third Row- Marti (Housley) Roddy, Neva (Tyler) Webb, Diane (Hill) Reed, Debbie Smith, Andy Sneed, Joe Whittley, Todd Garrison, Wes Crawford, Dewayne Roddy, Ted Shaver, Kirk Vincent, Glenda Ritchey, Paul Maynor, and Cheri (Vericker) Rucker,
L-R Fourth Row- Will McPherson, Ron Gilbert, Kevin Garrison, Barry Cochran, John Morgan, Steve Special, and Don Carr.
Not Pictured- Liisa (Ehmig) Lowry, Donnie Wasson, Mark Wilson, Scott Heath, William Barnes, Tammy Wiggs, Melanie Hilliam, Tracy Womac, Daryl Garrison, Kim (Farmer) Ward, Robert Martin, Scott Pendergrass, Bill Sims and David Mincy.
(Photos Courtesy of Cunnyngham Studio Archives)
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