Two teens killed, two injured in Bluegrass Parkway crash

kward1@herald-leader.comMarch 22, 2014 

Four teenage boys who were returning home after watching a Boys' Sweet Sixteen state tournament basketball game were involved in a wreck on Bluegrass Parkway Friday that left two of them dead and two injured.

The four were riding in a 2010 Nissan pickup truck that hit the back of a tractor-trailer stopped on the westbound shoulder of the parkway near mile marker 52 in Anderson County, according to a news release from state police.

Dr. Mark Tussey, Anderson County coroner, said the teens were students at Christian County High School who were returning home after watching Hopkinsville High School play in the basketball tournament.

"It wasn't even their school," he said. "They came to see their cross-town rivals play."

Tussey said one teen was pronounced dead at the scene, but he declined to provide his name.

Jacob Blankenship, 17, of Hopkinsville, was taken by helicopter to University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 9:41 p.m., according to a news release from the Fayette County coroner's office.

Jacob was riding in the front passenger seat of the pickup, according to the release. He suffered multiple blunt force trauma and was pronounced dead after surgery.

The driver of the Nissan and another passenger were also taken to UK Chandler Hospital, state police said. Their names were not released.

Tussey said they were conscious and were able to be interviewed about the wreck.

Tussey said drugs and alcohol are not thought to be involved in the crash, but investigators are still trying to figure out why the truck rear-ended the semi.

The driver of the tractor-trailer also was taken to UK after the wreck. Tussey said he did not believe the driver suffered injuries in the crash, but that he began to suffer cardiac symptoms afterward.

Karla Ward: (859) 231-3314. Twitter: @HLpublicsafety

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