WRENS, Ga. — A Spanish teacher at Jefferson High School died Tuesday night when she drove her car into the path of another vehicle.
Heidi Benstead Hernandez, 28, of Evans, was traveling north on Campground Road outside Wrens about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday when she stopped at U.S. Highway 80, said Georgia State Patrolt Trooper 1st Class Gerald Lyles.
“From what I saw and from what the deputies told me, she did come to a complete stop and looked both ways … probably and didn’t see the vehicle and pulled out,” the trooper said.
The other vehicle, a 2002 Chevrolet Impala driven by Neiley Donell Chance, 37, of Sardis, Ga., hit Hernandez’ car on the driver’s side.
“She died on impact,” Lyles said.
A passenger in Hernandez’s car, Steven Bryant Jones, 34, of Martinez, and Chance were taken to Medical College of Georgia Hospital.
Chance has been discharged and Jones is in fair condition, a hospital spokeswoman said Wednesday.
Jefferson County Coroner Edward James Jr. said no alcohol tests would be run on Hernandez, although such tests are routinely done when there is a fatality.
“I called the crime lab and explained she just failed to yield,” James said. The coroner said he spoke with the families of the victims.
He said Hernandez and Jones were headed home when the accident occurred.
“I know they bought a house in Martinez,” he said.
“We are taking care of the kids and teachers today,” Jefferson County High School principal Alan Long said Wednesday.
“We will meet in the morning to talk about what we will do Friday,” he said. “Today, we are trying to get through the day.”
Thomas Poteet & Son Funeral Directors will be in charge of the service. Arrangements were not available Wednesday.