Posted: 6:50 a.m. Friday, Jan. 4, 2013

Boone family injured after SUV struck by wrong-way driver

Savannah accident
A Burke County family of five was hurt in a crash involving a wrong way driver in Georgia.

By Dave Faherty


A university professor and his family are recovering Friday, after a wrong-way driver sent them to the hospital.

The Miller family is from Boone, but the accident happened Thursday morning on Interstate 95 right outside of Savannah, Ga.

Neighbors to Vachel Miller in the rural community in the western part of Watauga County, have been taking care of the family's cats and other animals while they were away.

They said they were supposed to get home yesterday but never made it after an elderly driver heading south in the northbound lanes hit them.

"They have three beautiful children," said neighbor Odette Pinske. "Beautiful blue-eyed, blond haired. Sweet. Smart and they always do things together. Hiking, canoeing. They are always into something."

Friends said the couple's 10-year-old son remains hospitalized after undergoing surgery Friday morning.

Vachel Miller is assistant professor of education at Appalachian State University which released a statement Friday afternoon from Dr. Charles Duke, dean of the Reich College of Education, stating, "We were saddened to learn of the serious vehicle accident involving Assistant Professor Vachel Miller and his family ... the university community joins the Millers' church family and friends in thoughts and prayers for a speedy recovery and safe return to Boone."

Until that happens, friends and neighbors are doing what they can to help while praying for the family.

"It is always horrific when you hear something like that. Of course we were shocked and I immediately started calling friends to pray and pray for the family," said neighbor Elizabeth Randel.

Friends tell us it may be another four to five days before the 10-year-old is released from the hospital. The university did say that the injuries, while serious, were not life-threatening.          

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