UNC Charlotte student, boyfriend killed in crash involving drunk driver

LUMBERTON, N.C. — A student at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte was killed, along with her boyfriend, in a crash involving a drunk driver in Lumberton Monday morning, according to police.

Channel 9 has confirmed that Dana Michelle Wilson and Ryan Michael Menke, both 18, were killed in the crash on U.S. Highway 74 West around 1 a.m.

Lumberton police said that an Oldsmobile driven by Broderick Jones, 38, was heading east in the westbound lanes and slammed into Wilson's Ford Focus.

Wilson and Menke, who were both from Wilmington, were killed in the crash.

Jones suffered life-threatening injuries and was flown to the hospital.

Alcohol is suspected to be a factor in the crash, police said, and told Channel 9 that both vehicles were destroyed in the collision.

Wilson was a freshman at UNCC. She started classes in January and moved into an off-campus apartment with Menke.

"They deserved to live much longer," Allie Williams, Wilson's friend and fellow UNCC student, said.

Williams describes Wilson as fun and friendly. She was planning on introducing Wilson to her friends this week. They grew up together in Wilmington.

"She had so much going for her. She was so bubbly and so happy," Williams said.

According to Williams, Menke recently started working in Charlotte. The couple decided to visit home in Wilmington last weekend.

Williams said the couple was struck and killed on their way back to Charlotte.

Friends are hoping UNC Charlotte holds a vigil for the couple, but none is planned at this time.

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