School year ends in tragic
accident for LSHS student
Heading east on Highway 92 she started to turn left onto 127th Dr. NE when her Nissan Sentra was struck by a Kenworth dump truck carrying a trailer and a load of gravel.
According to police, the truck slammed on its brakes and skidded quite a long distance before hitting the Sentra which was turning in front of the truck.
“The investigation has not been completed but that’s what it looks like,” Sergeant Rob Brooks said.
Both vehicles ended up in the ditch and the truck lost part of its load. Highway 92 was closed for a short time while the gravel was being cleaned up.
The 56-year-old truck driver from Snohomish was taken by ambulance to Providence-Colby Campus and released with no obvious physical injuries.
The family knows that Stephanie is a living miracle.
Jones was conscious when she was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle where she was in critical condition but has been upgraded to stable condition.
“Stephanie is doing fantastic. She had surgery for a broken elbow/arm and will be having surgery in the next week or so for several fractures around her right eye,” her mother, Becky Hopkins stated in an email. “She has great memory recall, other than the accident and no paralysis.”
Stephanie’s parents have always been concerned of the safety, or lack thereof, on Hwy. 92 and have always worried about Stephanie and her friends when they have to travel that road.
“Every time that Stephanie has had to come home or go somewhere at night across Hwy. 92, I have her call me to tell me when she is leaving so that I know that she is OK,” Hopkins said.
With the speed limit on Highway 92 posted at 55 mph with no left hand turn lanes and the road used as a main access to and from Granite Falls, many large trucks have to drive on this highway to work. Hopkins feels that this area should be zoned a school zone.
“With three schools that have over 3000 students all together who could at any time be on this road, between driving themselves, the school buses or parents transporting them, they could be in some kind of an accident,” she said.
Hopkins, Stephanie and her dad, Steve Jones, all want to make Highway 92 a safer place to drive for everyone.
“I am very motivated to do this, to see if we can get this area fixed. Stephanie is also committed to getting this started. I would love to see the whole community get involved.” Hopkins said. “This has been a known issue for many years - a lot of people have died and unless someone changes something, this will be someone else's son or daughter sooner or later,” she added.
Right now Hopkins is so grateful that her daughter is healing and knows that without those who were called in to respond to Stephanie’s accident she may not have been so lucky.
“A huge thank you to the fantastic fire department and paramedics that took great care of Stephanie in her most critical moments. They saved her life and got her to the best care possible in the quickest way,” she said. “Thank you to the community and our family and friends for their continued support, thoughts and prayers! The school district has been fantastic with support also.”
She sees a tough road ahead but also a long life for her daughter.
“The future looks like one filled with a lot of physical therapy for her arm but we don't know more than that at this point. She is going to walk out of here though and have a few scars, a big story and a great future,” she said.