Woman accused of killing WWII vet during third DUI offense

Woman accused of killing WWII vet during third DUI offense

Posted:
Ken Bollan (Source: Lee Erickson) Ken Bollan (Source: Lee Erickson)
Tammy Murphy (Source: Blount County Sheriff's Office) Tammy Murphy (Source: Blount County Sheriff's Office)
"I feel very bad, very bad about them people," Clarence Murphy, Tammy's husband, said. "I'm very sorry for them." "I feel very bad, very bad about them people," Clarence Murphy, Tammy's husband, said. "I'm very sorry for them."
"When you talk to him you are experiencing the world that was 50 and 60 years ago and quite different. Those people are little time capsules," Lee Erickson said. "When you talk to him you are experiencing the world that was 50 and 60 years ago and quite different. Those people are little time capsules," Lee Erickson said.

By JILL MCNEAL
6 News Anchor/Reporter

MARYVILLE (WATE) - The driver blamed in a deadly wreck Thursday has a history of DUI arrests.

After the crash on Highway 411 in Maryville, Tammy Murphy, 42, was charged with aggravated vehicular homicide and her third DUI offense.

The wreck took the life of a World War II veteran and sent Murphy's three-year-old grandson to the hospital. 

Ken Bollan, 89, a former B-24 pilot, was driving his pick-up truck with his bicycle in the back near his home when he was killed.

Police say Murphy crossed over the center lane and later admitted to taking narcotic medication.

"She's bipolar schizophrenic and she has blackout seizures," said Murphy's husband Clarence.

He said the only drugs she was on at the time of the wreck were prescribed to her. 

"Anytime anybody takes eight different medicines, there's something bad wrong," Clarence said.

He spoke to Tammy last night from jail.

"She feels bad, but she don't remember anything," he said. "She wouldn't have meant to hurt anybody."

He said her three-year-old grandson, who was in the car with her, was released from the hospital the night of the wreck into DCS custody. He knows Tammy is accused of killing the driver of the pick-up she crashed into.

"I feel very bad, very bad about them people," Clarence said. "I'm very sorry for them."

Ken Bollan didn't have any family in East Tennessee, but he did have a good friend in his next door neighbor.

Lee Erickson had a lot in common with him, though they were of different generations. They were both pilots and took a trip to Florida together 15 years ago.

Lee loved hearing Ken's stories.

"He flew a B-24 in the Pacific theatre," he said. "He had I think 50 or 52 missions."

He always had plans to record his friend's war stories. He thought he'd have the time.

"When you talk to him you are experiencing the world that was 50 and 60 years ago and quite different. Those people are little time capsules," he said.

Tammy Murphy has two prior convictions for DUI in Blount County, both from 2004.

Back in March of this year, she did plead guilty to resisting arrest in another incident and was sentenced to six months in jail, but that sentence was suspended.

She was released and told to be on good behavior.

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