Police were trying to determine what caused an accident that claimed the life of a 22-year-old Belleville man Wednesday as well as the driver of the vehicle with which he collided.
According to the Missouri Highway Patrol, Brandon S. Stuckey crossed the center line at about 5:30 p.m. as he was heading east on Highway HH near Carthage, Mo. in his Chevrolet Cavalier. He crashed head on into a full-sized pick-up truck driven by Julie G. Cartwright, 48, of Joplin, Mo.
Stuckey was a student at Ozark Christian College in Joplin.
"I had the privilege of having Brandon in my Life Group, and I can tell you that he was a young man with a passion for Christ and a heart for people," Ozark Christian College President Matt Proctor wrote on the school's Facebook page. "He came to Ozark from Belleville, Ill., and as a student in my Homiletics class, Brandon's thoughtful and Biblical sermons confirmed his calling as a preaching major. He was a valued member of our drama department and an active volunteer at First Christian Church in Carthage, Mo. He was a true Christian gentleman."
An infant in the pickup truck, Hayven Cartwright, who is less than 1 year old, was the only survivor of the crash. The relationship between Cartwright and the baby was not immediately clear, but Hayven may have been the woman's grandson.
Stuckey, according to police reports, was wearing his seat belt while Cartwright was not.
According to police reports, weather and visibility were not believed to be a factor in the collision. Investigators will conduct toxicology tests and an autopsy to see if Stuckey had a medical issue that contributed to the accident.