Priest pronounced dead after crash; mom and child injured

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A Richmond priest was pronounced dead and a mom and child were injured after a Tuesday afternoon (March 12) traffic accident on U.S. 40 on Richmond’s far-west side.

Officers of the Wayne County Sheriff’s Department responded to a motor vehicle accident in the 3800 block of West U.S. 40 (National Road West) involving two vehicles shortly before 2 p.m.

Sheriff Randy Retter said it was initially reported that both drivers were trapped in their vehicles.

The preliminary investigation indicates that Kevin Morris, 63, of Richmond, was eastbound on U.S. 40 driving a green 2010 Ford Focus. Morris’ vehicle crossed the center line into the path of the oncoming traffic, Retter said.

Amber Whitt, 27, of Richmond, was driving a blue 2006 Dodge Grand Caravan westbound in the passing lane. The vehicles collided head-on in the passing lane of westbound U.S. 40.

Whitt suffered a fractured leg, internal injuries and a possible neck injury. Whitt was accompanied by two children, an 8-year-old who suffered a possible broken jaw, and a 10-year-old who had no apparent injuries.

Morris was pronounced dead at the scene. The cause of his death has yet to be determined and is under investigation by the Wayne County Coroner’s Office, Retter said.

Morris was the pastor of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish and Seton Catholic Schools. Funeral arrangements are yet to be announced.

Centerville Police Department, Centerville Fire Department, Richmond Police Department, Red Line EMS, Reid Health, the Indiana State Police and the Wayne County Coroner’s Office all aided the sheriff’s office in this incident.

The crash is still under investigation by the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office.