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By RUSSELL TURNER
Local residents are still trying to come to terms with a tragic accident that claimed the life of a Leakesville man and seriously injured his wife while the couple was cycling on a state highway near their home last week.
Edwin Mack Douglas, 68, passed away early Wednesday morning at a Hattiesburg hospital from injuries sustained in the accident. According to a spokesperson with the Mississippi Highway Patrol, Douglas and his wife Cecelia Douglas, 64, were riding their bicycles in the northbound lane of Miss. 57 just before 4 p.m. last Tuesday when they were struck by a truck driven by Gerome Poole, 19, of State Line, who was traveling in the same direction.
The trooper investigating the accident said Poole saw the couple riding their bikes near the ‘fog’ line on the highway and was moving over into the left lane as he approached when the left front tire on the pickup blew out, causing him to lose control momentarily and strike the cyclists.
The MHP spokesperson said the crash remains under investigation.
The Douglases, who routinely ride on the 4-lane due to better visability for passing motorists, were taken to Greene County Hospital and later transferred to Forrest General Hospital. Cecelia Douglas was released later in the week and is recovering from her injuries. Her husband was laid to rest Saturday morning. His full obituary can be found in this week’s edition of the Herald.
The tragedy struck the community hard as Douglas was active in his church, community and the Kairos Prison Ministry.
“There are just no words to describe the void that has been left in our lives and church with Mack’s death,” said friend and fellow Leakesville United Methodist Church member Stacy Eubanks. Mack worked diligently with the ministry he loved, Kairos Prison Ministry, and he touched the lives of so many students as he tutored them every Wednesday.”
“He was affectionately known as “Professor Mack” at VBS time while he shared his love of science and Jesus with the children. He was a man that I am proud to call a friend. His death left our church and community broken hearted, but because of who he was and the life he lived, he left both church and community a better place because he was part of it.”