The Reporter covers Miller, Morgan and Camden County in Central Missouri's Lake of the Ozarks and is published once per week on Wednesdays.


Published July 8, 2020

Third week in a row: Man dies in two-vehicle accident

LAKE OF THE OZARKS – A Camdenton man is dead after an accident last week on Highway 5.

According to the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP) last Monday (June 29) at 1:39 p.m. on Highway 5 north of the Business Route 5 overpass, a 2012 MAZDA 6, driven by Tracy Kemp, 60, of Fulton, MO, was northbound when her vehicle struck the rear of a 1990 Ford F150, driven by Tommy Ward, 70, of Camdenton, MO.

The Ford then traveled off the right side of the roadway, struck an embankment and overturned, ejecting the driver.

Ward was pronounced dead at the scene by Camden County Medical Examiner Jason Funke. The MSHP said Ward was not wearing a safety device.

Both vehicles were totaled in the accident.

This was Troop F’s 13th fatality for June and 33rd for 2020.

In other accidents last week:

An encounter with a deer sent a Sedalia man to the hospital.

On Sunday June 28 at 8 a.m., on Highway 50 just east of Lipton Road in Morgan County, a 2001 Suzuki motorcycle, driven by Louis Tuck, 47, of Sedalia, MO, was eastbound when the bike struck a deer and overturned.

Tuck was taken by ambulance to University Hospital in Columbia with serious injuries. He was wearing a safety device. The motorcycle sustained extensive damage.

On Monday June 29 at 4:45 a.m., a 2006 Polaris Sportsman 500, driven by Jared Davis, 37, of Rocky Mount, MO, was traveling east on Kiefer Road in Miller County when the vehicle failed to negotiate a curve, running off the right side of the road where it collided with a rock, ejected Davis and a passenger, Jason Olivo, 24, of Vista California.

Both received serious injuries and were taken by Ambulance to Lake Regional Hospital. The MSHP said neither was wearing a safety device.

Jared Davis was charged by the MSHP with the following:

He was released for medical treatment.

On Thursday June 2, several accidents occurred in the lake area sending numerous people to the hospital.

At 5:50 a.m. on Route 7 at Old Nonsuch Road in Camden County, a 2018 Dodge Ram 2500, driven by Terry Williams, 66, of Climax Springs, MO, was attempting to make a left turn onto North Highway 7 from Old Nonsuch Road when, according to the MSHP, a 2007 Hyundai Santa Fe, driven by Ashley Menke, 35, of Camdenton, MO failed to yield to the Dodge and impacted the vehicle forcing both vehicles off the road and into a fence.

Menke received serious injuries and was transported by ambulance to Lake Regional Hospital. She was wearing a safety device.

Three passengers in Menke’s car were also injured and were taken to Lake Regional Hospital by ambulance. They were:

Brittany Wallace, 27, of Camdenton, MO, received serious injuries.
Jacob Watt, 30, received minor injuries.
Anthony Carlson, 41, received moderate injuries.

None of the three passengers were wearing a safety device, the MSHP stated. The Hyundai was totaled and the Dodge received moderate damage in the accident.

Later that morning (9:32 a.m.) a Chevrolet Equinox, driven by Berneal Aarhus, 81, of Walker IA, was westbound on Highway 54 at Copperhead Road in Miller County when the vehicle ran off the right side of the road, struck a delineator post, an electronic message board, a guardrail and a tree before coming to a stop.

A passenger in the vehicle, Laura Aarhus, 80, also of Walker, IA, received moderate injuries and was taken to Lake Regional Hospital by ambulance. The MSHP said Berneal received no injuries but was still taken to the hospital. Both were wearing their safety devices. The vehicle was totaled.

The final accident that day was at 3:18 p.m. on Route 5 just south of Sunset Palm south junction in Camden County.

According to the MSHP, a 2005 Chevrolet Cobalt, driven by Noelle Gann, 29, of Sunrise Beach MO, and a 2000 Pontiac Grand Am, driven by Samantha White, 35, also from Sunrise Beach, MO were northbound. The Cobalt was behind the Grand Am.

A third vehicle, a 2011 Jeep Compass, driven by Phyliss Vithulkos, 73, of Olathe KS, was traveling the opposite direction (south) of the Cobalt and the Grand Am.

The Grand Am signaled to turn right on to Sunset Palms when the Cobalt struck the rear of the vehicle and then struck the Jeep. The Jeep ran off the right side of the road and then returned to the roadway.

Gann received minor injuries and was transported to the hospital by ambulance. She and White were wearing their safety devices but it was unknown if Vithulkos was wearing hers.

The Cobalt and Jeep received extensive damage while the Grand Am sustained minor damage.

Two people are lucky to be alive after an accident early last Friday morning.

At 1:26 a.m., a 2006 Ford Crown Victoria, driven by Terrian Davis, 26, of Fulton, MO, was southbound on Horseshoe Bend Parkway and Bittersweeet Road in Camden County when the vehicle “failed to stop at a stop sign” the MSHP said.

The vehicle then went off a 15-foot bluff and overturned.

A passenger in the vehicle, Nyarris Day, 24, of Jefferson City, MO, received moderate injuries and was transported to the hospital by ambulance.

Davis received minor injuries and refused treatment at the scene. The MSHP said neither was wearing a safety device. The vehicle was totaled in the crash.

The results of the July 4th holiday period were not available at press time and should be in next week’s edition.

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