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Church Van Accident Kills Three, Injures 15

December 14, 1986

WELLSTON, Okla. (AP) _ A tire blew out in a church van carrying 18 people to a revival, causing the vehicle to run off the road and roll over three times and leaving three dead and 15 injured, one critically, officials said.

One of those hurt in Saturday night’s crash said Sunday that there was no screaming among the passengers but a lot of loud prayers as the vehicle rolled over.

″I felt the bus start swerving and then it began to roll over,″ said Marcus Bryant, 21, who was treated at Edmond Hospital after the Saturday night crash and released.

Bryant said he did not know how many times the van rolled over on the four- lane Turner Turnpike in central Oklahoma.

″I felt it begin to roll the first time, but then I woke up outside lying in some gas. I must have been knocked out for a few seconds. I saw a lot of other folks lying around to,″ he said.

The accident happened when a tire blew out on the van, causing it to run off the road and roll over three times, said Highway Patrol dispatcher Elizabeth Nelson.

Occupants of the van were tossed about the vehicle and thrown out of some windows, officers said.

″I didn’t see any windows that had glass in them,″ Bryant said in a telephone interview.

Two people died at the scene of the crash and a third died at Presbyterian Hospital in Oklahoma City, the patrol said.

Nine people remained hospitalized Sunday, one of them critically, hospital officials said. Six others were released after treatment at hospitals in Stroud, Oklahoma City and Edmond.

Most of the passengers were sleeping as the van was headed to a revival in Tulsa, Bryant said.

Update hourly