Posted at: 11/07/2012 8:44 PM
Updated at: 11/07/2012 10:22 PM
By: Dietrich Nissen
(ABC 6 News) -- Just hours before the polls closed last night, a tragic accident took the life of three people. It happened along Highway 14 near Dodge Center.
The Minnesota State Patrol says wet pavement played a role in that crash. After knowing Scott Hodgman for decades, it was hard for Burton Boe to hear he died.
"It's going to be an impossibility to replace him," says Boe. He says the 50-year-old native was always there to help the West Concord community. Whether it was during their Survival Days summer festival or during the winter, when he'd help plow the city's streets.
"He always fixed our broken water mains and stuff like that...him and his crew…yeah he was an asset to this city, really," says Boe.
The Hodgman family tells us it's too soon to talk but they shared a photo of Scott.
State Patrol says Scott and two others died at the accident early Tuesday evening.
"All three fatalities happened immediately at the point of impact," says Trooper Grant Feddersen.
He say Scott was driving east along Highway 14 when he veered into the westbound lane hitting the car of a family from North Dakota head on.
"Conditions at the time were wet with a light misty rain and it was obviously after dark," says Feddersen.
The other driver, 43-year-old Jack Reich, died at the scene. His wife, Mardee, was flown to Saint Marys Hospital in serious condition. Their 10-year-old son, Vander, was sitting in the front of the car and also died. The family was returning home after Vander underwent cancer treatment at Mayo Clinic.
While family and friends in North Dakota grieve for the Reichs, Boe and many others in West Concord, grieve for Scott and the Hodgman family.
"He was like a brother," says Boe. “He was just an awful good person to the city. He's going to be really missed."
Visitation with the Hodgman family will be this Friday afternoon in West Concord. Scott’s funeral will follow Saturday morning at 11 a.m. at Saint John's Lutheran Church in Owatonna.