Neighbors saddened, shocked by Gov. John Sevier Hwy. wreck

Neighbors saddened, shocked by Gov. John Sevier Hwy. wreck

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The driver of the sedan, Benjamin Woodruff, 38, was killed in the accident. His little boy, 6-year-old Ethan Woodruff remains in critical condition tonight. The driver of the sedan, Benjamin Woodruff, 38, was killed in the accident. His little boy, 6-year-old Ethan Woodruff remains in critical condition tonight.
"I just saw a broken up car and it was just terrifying, I don't think I'll ever see anything as scary," Amiah England said. "I just saw a broken up car and it was just terrifying, I don't think I'll ever see anything as scary," Amiah England said.
"We knew as soon as we went down there that he was gone," said neighbor Cari England. "We knew as soon as we went down there that he was gone," said neighbor Cari England.

By MIKE KRAFCIK
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - A father is dead and a child is still recovering in the hospital after a three-vehicle wreck Friday night in South Knox County. 

The accident happened on Gov. John Sevier Highway at Austin Park Lane.

Investigators say a Chevy Blazer crossed the center line, striking a sedan.

The driver of the sedan, Benjamin Woodruff, 38, was killed in the accident. His little boy, 6-year-old Ethan Woodruff remains in critical condition tonight.  

Adding to this tragedy is that Benjamin Woodruff was almost home, turning onto his own street before he was fatally struck by a driver believed to be under the influence.  

"We knew as soon as we went down there that he was gone," said neighbor Cari England.

Many at the mountain place subdivision off of Austin Park Lane are still haunted today by the scene of a horrific accident, which killed Benjamin Woodruff and injured three others Friday night.  

11-year old Amiah England saw the moment of impact as she was playing in the neighborhood. 

"I just saw a broken up car and it was just terrifying, I don't think I'll ever see anything as scary," England said.

Located hundreds of yards from the accident site is the Woodruff family home, which appeared vacant on Friday.

Tanner Metler lives across the street from the Woodroof home and was devastated when he found out the news of the death. 

"He didn't deserve that, one guy's wrong decision is going to cost two kids not having a dad for their rest of their life," said Metler.

He says he knows the family well, including Benjamin and his two children.

"They were just always happy, never mad, a lot like their dad, just great kids," said Metler.  

Close friends and family spent Saturday visiting Benjamin's wife in the hospital. The widow is there with her 6-year-old, who is in critical condition.

"It makes you want to hug your loved ones closely. You never know when it's your time," said Cari England. 

Woodruff and his family are former members of the Freedom Worship Center in Strawberry Plains. 

In a statement today, the church's Pastor Beau Riffey said, "This is a great loss.  Ben and the Woodruff family are very dear to me and to the entire freedom worship center congregation.  He will be greatly missed."

The family has hired Knoxville based attorney Darren Berg.  

The accident is being investigated as a vehicular homicide and charges are pending. THP says the case will be prepared and discussed with the District Attorney.

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