MALHEUR COUNTY, OR - On Sunday, May 21, 2023, at approximately 11:14 A.M., the Oregon State Police responded to a multi-vehicle crash on Highway 95, near milepost 25, in Malheur County.
The preliminary investigation indicated a 2017 Ford Explorer, operated by Ryan Michael Mercer (38) of Springfield (MO), was traveling northbound, in the southbound lane, on US-95 in a no-passing zone. A 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee, operated by Walter Robert Gilmore (73) of Star (ID), was traveling southbound in the southbound lane followed by a 2022 Ford Edge, operated by Joseph J Luia (37) of Sparks (NV).
The Jeep swerved onto the southbound shoulder to avoid a collision with the Ford Explorer and struck a fog marker before coming to a stop. The Ford Explorer and Ford Edge collided in an offset head-on crash in the southbound lane.
The Ford Edge continued southbound and came to an uncontrolled rest, along the southbound shoulder, in an upright position.
The Ford Explorer continued northbound, entered into a roll-over event before coming to an uncontrolled rest along the southbound shoulder on its driver's side.
The operator of the Ford Explorer (Mercer) was declared deceased at the scene.
The operator of the Jeep Cherokee (Gilmore) and passenger, Diana Lynn Bonsey-Gilmore (72) of Star (ID), were uninjured during the crash.
The operator of the Ford Edge (Luia) and a rear passenger, Alexander E. Murillo (33) of Reno (NV), were transported with serious injuries. The front passenger, Felissia A. Luia (37) of Sparks (NV), was injured but not transported. A rear passenger, Lisa K. Johnson (58) of Sparks (NV), was declared deceased at the scene.
The highway was closed for approximately 2 hours during the on-scene investigation.
OSP was assisted by the Malheur County Sheriff's Office, Jordan Valley Ambulance, and ODOT.