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Triple Fatal Traffic Crash - Highway 26 east of Elsie
01/21/2008
Sergeant Andrew Merila
Oregon State Police - Astoria
Office: (503) 325-5515 ext. 26

Photograph links valid for 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
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Oregon State Police is continuing the investigation of a two-vehicle head-on crash Sunday afternoon on Highway 26 east of Elsie that resulted in the death of three people and injuries to four others. Names of a second deceased victim is provide following next of kin notification. Investigators have confirmed that the two identified victims were students at the Tongue Point Job Corps Center in Astoria.
 
Preliminary investigation indicates on January 20, 2008 at approximately 3:45 p.m. a red 1999 Volkswagen Jetta driven by FLORENCIO MARTINEZ-BUTRON, age 22, from Gardena, California, was westbound on Highway 26 near milepost 25 when, for unknown reasons, crossed the center line and crashed nearly head-on with an eastbound Chevrole Silverado pickup driven by WALTER E. REMMERS JR., age 53, from northwest Portland.
 
Three female passegers in the Volkswagen Jetta were pronounced deceased at the scene.
  • Right front passenger LIZ A. MATEO-GOMEZ, age 17, from Beaverton, was pronounced deceased at the scene. She was using safety restraints.
  • Middle rear passenger ROXANA M. CHAVEZ, age 23, from Tigard, was pronounced deceased at the scene. She was not using safety restraints.
  • A 23-year old right rear female passenger from California, was pronounced deceased at the scene. She was not using safety restraints.
 
Passengers MATEO-GOMEZ and CHAVEZ were reported to be students at Tongue Point Job Corps Center.
 
Driver FLORENCIO MARTINEZ-BUTRON was using safety restraints and received minor injuries. He was transported to Legacy Emanuel Hospital in Portland.
 
Left rear passenger MIGUEL ANGEL MARTINEZ-BUTRON, age 21, was not using safety restraints and was transported by LifeFlight to Legacy Emanuel Hospital in Portland with critical injuries.
 
REMMERS and passenger JAMIE M. DALLAS, age 34, from Portland, were reportedly transported to Legacy Emanuel Hospital. REMMERS received minor injuries and DALLAS received non-life threatening injuries.
 
Investigating troopers advise conditions at the time of the crash were not icy and alcohol/drugs were not factors.
 
Oregon State Police troopers from the Astoria Area Command office are continuing the investigation. ODOT and Elsie-Vinemaple Fire Department personnel are assisting. A detour was establised around the scene and the highway was reopened about 9:30 p.m.