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Posted on Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 1 p.m.

71-year-old Ypsilanti Township woman killed in head-on collision Wednesday

By Kyle Feldscher

Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office officials have identified the woman killed in Wednesday’s head-on collision in Ypsilanti Township and continue to investigate what caused the crash.

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Deputies released the name of the woman killed in a head-on collision in Ypsilanti Township Wednesday.

Courtney Sacco |

Willie Mae Lewis, 71, of Ypsilanti Township was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash at North Hewitt Road and Valley Drive. The crash occurred at 6:09 p.m. Wednesday, officials said.

Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Derrick Jackson said Lewis was was driving south on Hewitt when her car crossed the center line to the far east lane. Her vehicle collided with a vehicle driven by a 23-year-old Jackson man, who was north in that lane.

“We’re not sure why she crossed the center line but neither one saw it coming,” Jackson said.

The Jackson man, who had to be removed from his vehicle with the Jaws of Life, was transported to a local hospital with head trauma, but his injuries are not believed to be life threatening. Jackson said there was no update available on the man since Wednesday.

Jackson said a toxicology report will be done to determine what may have caused her to allow her vehicle to go into the far right northbound lane. Hewitt Road is four lanes wide where the crash happened.

At this point, alcohol is not suspected to be a factor in the crash.

The drivers were the only people in both vehicles.

The incident was the third fatal crash in less than a week. A 63-year-old Willis man died in an Augusta Township crash Friday and a 22-year-old Belleville man was killed near Chelsea on Monday morning.

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Fri, Mar 22, 2013 : 5:40 p.m.

This is a crazy stretch of Hewitt. There is very little room for error at 45 mph especially for those in the middle lanes in either direction.

Sam S Smith

Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 9:15 p.m.

Special thoughts and prayers for Ms. Lewis, her family and friends! Special thoughts and prayers for the young man, his family and friends!


Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 6:14 p.m.

Isn't there usually an uptick in auto accidents in the weeks following the time change? Are there data on accidents by week or month in the county?

Ann English

Fri, Mar 22, 2013 : 12:13 a.m.

Kyle posted a link regarding DST and the resulting loss of sleep immediately following it in comments following the head-on collision in Saline (Michigan Avenue and Old State Road). It would be interesting if a columnist wrote an article comparing accident statistics following our fall back (caused by darkness) and our spring forward (caused by drowsiness).

Ann English

Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 9:18 p.m.

Right on, YpsiLivin. When we go back onto Standard Time in the fall, it's much darker outside at afternoon rush hour. Lighter outside during morning rush hour.


Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 6:20 p.m.

Data suggest that there is an increase in the number of car-pedestrian accidents in the days following the switch FROM daylight saving time to standard time in the fall.


Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 5:56 p.m.

"We're not sure why she crossed the center line but neither one saw it coming," Jackson said." While we are taught to be alert and to expect the unexpected, usually most people do not expect a car to travel across three lanes of traffic to hit them. This accident, as well as the recent spate of odd crashes, emphasizes how much our safety while driving relies upon everyone being able to do what they are supposed to do at the same time.


Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 5:51 p.m.

I'm so sorry for the death of this woman and my condolences to her family as well as the other driver. But I don't understand this statement ""We're not sure why she crossed the center line but neither one saw it coming," Jackson said."

Kyle Feldscher

Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 5:57 p.m.

I'll try to explain: Jackson was explaining that the lack of skidmarks indicate there was no braking by either driver, meaning that they didn't see the other vehicle and didn't try to stop.


Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 5:30 p.m.

Sounds like it could have been a medical emergency after all.


Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 6:44 p.m.

It does sound like it, and would explain why she was all the way over in the far lane and appeared to be going straight.

Craig Lounsbury

Thu, Mar 21, 2013 : 5:48 p.m.

seems more likely that than texting. In any case its sad and we can hope the 23-year-old Jackson man, recovers fully.