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Cleveland man dies in fatal head-on crash

December 6, 2018 GMT

A Cleveland family is mourning the loss of their loved one after he was killed in a head-on crash Nov. 28.

The Cleveland Police Department dispatch received a call around 1 p.m. to alert them of a two-vehicle crash on State Highway 105 bypass in Cleveland.

Witnesses said they observed a red Chevrolet pickup truck traveling east on SH 105 bypass that veered into the westbound lane striking an 18-wheeler trucks front left fender and cab. The 18-wheeler was pulling a trailer with a very large load.

According to witnesses of the horrific accident, the 18-wheeler immediately “burst into flames upon impact of the crash.”

The driver of the semi was able to immediately escape the burning cab.

The force of the collision, said witnesses, sent the pickup truck’s engine flying into the air and landing approximately 20-yards away down an embankment.

Upon arrival, emergency personnel immediately attempted to extinguish the flames coming from the rig. The lone occupant of the red truck appeared to be entrapped and showed signs of critical injuries but died later as a result of the impact.

Liberty County Justice of the Peace Pct. No. 6 Ralph Fuller pronounced the driver of the red truck deceased and ordered an autopsy. The driver of the red Chevrolet truck was identified as John Wesley Pillow, 39, of Cleveland.

The Cleveland Police Department was assisted by the Texas Department of Public Safety troopers in the crash investigation. Texas SH 105 bypass was shut down for around eight hours as Hazmat clean-up crews aided by TxDOT finished around 9 p.m. before the bypass was safe to re-open for normal travel.

The red 2012 Chevrolet pickup truck driven by the deceased was later confirmed to be stolen out of the State of Florida.