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Missouri teens injured in van wreck

Three weeks after an Oklahoma church van carrying 10 people rolled multiple times, causing severe injuries, a van carrying nine youths home from a church retreat in York, Neb., crashed near Hamburg in southwest Iowa June 26.

The Iowa State Patrol reported that the driver, Susan VanDeusen, 45, swerved to miss a tractor-trailer that was merging onto the road from a truck stop. The rented van skidded, flipped and rolled over, according to a June 28 report in the Kansas City Star.

Four people in the wreck were ejected, according to Hue Tolbert, an elder for the Lee’s Summit, Mo., church. Tolbert said VanDeusen made the best possible choice and saved everyone in the crash from more serious injuries.
All of the children in the van were taken to the hospital, but most were back in Lee’s Summit the next day, Tolbert told the newspaper. VanDeusen suffered two cracks in her spinal column, broken ribs and a punctured lung, according to the newspaper.

Efforts to reach VanDeusen were unsuccessful. Officials at the Creighton University Medical Center, Omaha, Neb., contacted July 9, said that she had been released.

She and her husband are active in the church’s youth ministry. Three VanDeusen children — Briana, Sarah and Rayan – were in the van when it wrecked.

Meanwhile, teens in Oklahoma continue to recover from a June 6 wreck in southwest Missouri. Members of the Memorial Road church, Oklahoma City, suffered injuries including a punctured lung, cracked vetebrae and a ruptured spleen after the tread separated from the rear wheel of the church van.

Most severely injured was Lezlie Carter, who suffered severe head trauma. Carter is recovering, and was scheduled to leave the hospital July 9, her parents said.

Filed under: National

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