ELKHART — We're learning more about a crash that took the lives of three women from Elkhart Friday night on U.S. 20 near Middlebury. The crash involved a car, a semi and a wide load signal truck assisting the semi. Police say the semi was headed east on U.S. 20 when it started to cross the center line. The car carrying the women struck the semi's trailer and then spun out and was hit by the signal truck.
Driving the car was Ernest Sailor, 87, of Elkhart. As of Sunday night, he's in stable condition at Elkhart General Hospital. Also in Sailor's car was Robert Burg, 52, of Elkhart. A hospital spokesman told WSBT Burg's been treated and released.
Killed were: Pamela Beemer, 46, of Elkhar; Maxine Sailor, 87; Virginia Miller, 85.
Beemer and Sailor lived next door to each other on Eberly Place in Elkhart. Their husbands were also in the car, they survived, but 87-year-old Ernest Sailor is still in the hospital with a broken hip waiting to go into surgery.
"Ernie and Max have lived here for about 35 years, they are our best friends on the street, like a second mother and father to us," Nancy Chandler, the victims neighbor said, "Everybody here in the neighborhood is pulling for Ernie and praying for both of the guys, we're all so saddened for this terrible thing that happened."
Chandler also remembers the third victim, Ginger Miller, Maxine Sailor's best friend.
"Ginger and Maxine had been friends for years, they went to the spa together, they shopped together, they went out to dinner together, where you saw one you saw the other," Chandler said.
She says Sailor and her husband were the same way.
"They were a really cute older couple, they've been married 61 or 62 years they used to pick at each other and we got the biggest kick out of them because it just went to show how long they had spent time together and knew each other's every little quirk," she said.
A cute couple the entire neighborhood is going to miss.
"It's going to be very lonely, very different, it's just going to be a bad situation for a while," Chandler said.
Ernest Sailor was the driver of that car. Police say he was also the only person wearing a seat belt in the vehicle.
Chandler said the group was driving back from dinner in Middlebury when the accident happened.