Beach man killed in crash was larger than life, family says

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by Eric Kane, 13News Now

WVEC.com

Posted on September 20, 2013 at 6:57 AM

Updated Friday, Sep 20 at 7:20 AM

VIRGINIA BEACH-The family of Thomas Rush has many questions and few answers about the crash that killed him.  

His tractor-trailer hauling grain was involved in an eight-vehicle pileup on Route 460/Pruden Blvd. in Suffolk Wednesday morning.

As police continue to investigate the crash, Rush's family is convinced that he swerved to save the lives of other people on the road.

“My dad knows the force behind a tractor trailer carrying an extremely heavy load,” explained his stepdaughter Jennifer. “My dad knew that if he were to hit those other two vehicles, he probably would've killed those people in those cars.”

Two people who were injured in the crash remain hospitalized in fair condition.

Best known for his larger-than-life personality, Rush’s family and friends say he could always lift everyone's spirits.

"There is not a person that hasn't met my dad that didn't instantly fall in love with him and who he was,” Jennifer added. “He was funny and outgoing and very loud, very boisterous.”

"He understood me, he understood everybody and nobody was a stranger,” said long-time girlfriend Lorrie Stevens. “If he would've met you tonight, he would've acted like he'd known you for years."

There will be a Celebration of Life Ceremony on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. at the Elks Lodge in Chesapeake.

Rush’s family says the 48-year-old Virginia Beach man is survived by four siblings, three children, nine grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

 

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