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2 die in Newton County crash
RV drifts, overcorrects, striking pickup truck

COVINGTON, Ga. — An Oxford couple died last weekend when their pickup truck was hit by a drifting RV.

State troopers said 72-year-old Benjamin Fred Christian and 70-year-old Sandra Christian died at the scene of the three-vehicle collision on Georgia 36 on May 31 near the Georgia FFA-FCCLA Center.

Troopers said a southbound recreational vehicle failed to maintain its lane, going off the shoulder of the highway.

The driver, 72-year-old Michael Albert Croak of Eustis, Florida, apparently overcorrected and caused the 2016 Holiday Rambler 35DK to cross the center line and run off the left shoulder.

The front end of the RV struck the front end of the Christians’ 2017 Chevrolet Silverado. The pickup overturned and a 2013 Chevrolet Suburban following it in the northbound lane swerved to avoid a collision. However, the left side of the SUV struck the side of the Chevrolet while it was overturning. The Silverado came to an uncontrolled rest on its roof facing north.

The RV rotated counterclockwise, coming to an uncontrolled rest on its right side on top of the wheels of the Silverado facing north.

The front end of the Suburban struck a fence.

Bridget Rutledge, 28, of Monticello, who was driving the Suburban, saw the first collision and told troopers the RV was “all over the road.”

Croak and a passenger, 67-year-old Connie Croak, were flown to Wellstar Atlanta Medical Center with serious injuries.

Rutledge and two passengers, including a toddler, were not injured.