Interstate 94 was reopened this morning after cranes and tow trucks worked through the night to untangle a crush of more than 40 semis and cars that collided in near blizzard conditions near Michigan City, Ind., killing three people, including a 65-year-old man from Chicago.
As many as 20 people were injured, some airlifted to hospitals.
“It was such a devastating scene,’’ said Fire Chief Mick Pawlik with the Cool Springs Volunteer Fire Department. “It’ll live with us forever.’’
Jerry Dalrymple, 65, of the 9000 block of South Bell Avenue in Chicago, was pronounced dead at the scene, apparently from blunt force trauma, the coroner’s office said. His 7-year-old black Labrador named Sparky also died.
Dalrymple, who worked for the Federal Home Loan Bank in Chicago, had been on his way to check the family’s summer home. “He loved walking Sparky along the lake,” his oldest daughter Laura Kelly said.
Also killed were a husband and wife from Grand Rapids, Mich. The coroner’s office identified them as Marilyn J. Wolma, 65, and Thomas D. Wolma, 67. They had been coming home from Wisconsin after caring for an ill relative, according to LaPorte County Coroner John Sullivan said.
“Lucky we didn’t have 10 more, you know, from looking at it?” the coroner said. “Thank God we didn’t have any more.”