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Olivia couple killed in crash with farm implement

OLIVIA — An Olivia couple has died as a result of injuries sustained when their vehicle struck an unoccupied farm implement Sunday evening along U.S. Highway 71 south of Olivia.

According to the State Patrol, the front seat passenger of the 2005 Buick, Carla R. Kopel, 74, was deceased upon the arrival of emergency personnel. The driver, Thomas J. Kopel, 76, was flown by air ambulance to North Memorial Medical Center in Robbinsdale before he died of his injuries.

According to the Patrol, the farm implement was stopped along the northbound shoulder and extended about 2 feet onto the lane of traffic. The car was northbound and struck the implement, which was not specified by the report, from behind. The crash was reported around 8:40 p.m. Sunday.

One of the rear seat passengers, Allie Cook Jr., 54, of Cottage Grove, was taken to the Olivia Hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. Another passenger seated in the rear seat, Theresa Cook, 53, of Cottage Grove, was not injured.

Also responding were the Olivia police, ambulance and fire departments and Renville County Sheriff’s Office.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

(320) 214-4373
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