CAMDEN, Ohio (WDTN) – An expectant mother, her husband, and their three-year-old toddler are confirmed as the victims in Tuesday’s fatal multi-car crash with a semi-truck.
Thirty-four-year-old Melissa Hudson, her husband Schon – also 34, and their three-year-old daughter Emerie died after the Jeep they were in collided with a truck.
The Preble County Sheriff’s department says evidence found at the scene, along with witness accounts, indicate the semi ran a red light at the intersection, hitting the Jeep.
Friends say Melissa was 16 weeks pregnant with the couple’s baby boy.
She leaves behind two daughters – fourth and sixth graders at West Elkton Intermediate School.
Melissa worked as a substitute teacher in the district and headed the local parent teacher organization.
Pastor Greg Jackson of First Southern Baptist Church says the community is still reeling from the tragic incident.
“It’s a hard day here in Camden,” Jackson said. “The wife was very active in the elementary schools. She will be greatly missed. The teachers are grieving today.”
Jackson said his church met with teachers this morning. They shared prayers and memories of a woman who Jackson said was well-liked by colleagues and students.
“They loved her. She was recently involved in the eclipse, the glasses and things like that through the PTA,” he said. “They’re really grieving.”
Liberty White, a family friend, described the family as “joyful” and “vibrant.” She said young Emerie was “one of the most beautiful little babies.”
Preble Shawnee Superintendent Matt Bishop said the entire community is grieving their loss.
“It’s tragic for the family, tragic for the kids that are left behind. I just know that the school and the community is going to do everything they can to support that family,” Bishop said. “It was a shock and profound sadness this morning. I was at Camden Elementary [where] we had a staff meeting before the kids arrived, and there were a lot of tears. It was really emotional.”
Jackson said this tight knit community will find solace in each other and their faith.
“When the bottom of life falls out like this, there’s only one place to turn and that’s to the Lord,” Jackson said. “And that’s our prayer, that through this – somehow – something good will come out of it.”
A fundraiser has been set up to raise money for the Hudson family’s funeral expenses.