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Family members of Crystal L. Lee, 34, of Ava, said she was transferred to Columbia on Friday for additional surgery to her legs that were badly broken in the 8 a.m. crash two miles south of Ava on Highway 5.
Lee was airlifted from the scene of the wreck to Cox South Hospital, Springfield, after being extricated by rescue workers from the City of Ava and Ava Rural fire departments.
Lee was driving a 2008 Hyundai Sonata south on Highway 5 when she collided head-on with a northbound 2007 Toyota pickup driven by Leslie W. Heriford, 20, of Ava.
Heriford was also seriously injured and was airlifted from the Ava airport to St. John’s Hospital in Springfield.
Sgt. Keith Jones, of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, reported that Heriford was traveling at a high rate of speed when he hit a northbound 2003 Volkswagen Jetta in the rear. The Heriford truck then crossed the centerline of Highway 5 and collided head-on with the Lee car.
The driver of the Jetta, Jared A. O’Brien, 24, of Drury, was not injured. O’Brien’s pregnant wife and 1-year-old child also escaped injury although their car sustained extensive damage, said Sgt. Jones who was assisted in investigating the crash by Tpr. Ryan Vaughan.
Family members said this week that Mrs. Lee is expected to remain in the Columbia hospital about two more weeks where doctors are focusing on her legs. Several more surgeries are expected before she can be released from the hospital to begin rehab in Springfield.
Heriford was released from the hospital early this week to recuperate at home.