A 34-year-old Murphysboro woman died Tuesday afternoon as a result of injuries sustained in a horrific car and truck accident along Ill. Rt. 127 approximately five miles north of Pinckneyville.
The accident was near the intersection with Bethel Road near the Perry/Washington County line.
Traci L. Blair was pronounced dead at the Pinckneyville Community Hospital following the 12:57 p.m. accident.
Illinois State Police at the District 13 command in Du Quoin say Blair was traveling north on Rt. 127 when the passenger vehicle she was driving crossed over into the southbound lane and was struck headon by a pickup truck driven by Orval H. Laird, 56, of Pinckneyville. Laird was taken to Washington County Hospital where he was being treated for major injuries as of Tuesday evening.
Sources tell the Murphysboro American Blair was on her way to Springfield to assist a daughter with a family matter. She is said to have been stopped a half-hour earlier by Pinckneyville police for speeding and had been given a warning.
Her car was so badly mangled it took a long time for Pinckneyville and Nashville firemen to effect an extrication.
An Arch medical evacuation helicopter was dispatched and asked to land at the scene. It touched down beside the highway, but was not used.
The Pinckneyville Ambulance Service and Washington County Ambulance Service assisted at the scene as did the Perry County Sheriffís Department and the Pinckneyville Police Department.
As of Wednesday morning, funeral arrangements were pending at the Pettett Funeral Home. Blair was the mother of a very popular Murphysboro little league baseball player.