Police ID Victims in Fatal Queen Anne's County Crash - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Four Teens Killed In Car Crash, Including Firefighter

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Aerial view of Wednesday afternoon's crash scene. (Photo: WBOC) Aerial view of Wednesday afternoon's crash scene. (Photo: WBOC)

CHESTER, Md.- The Kent Island firefighters responded to what was believed to be just another call.

"We run calls and you have incidents, but you don't know the person necessarily," said Second Assistant Chief Paul Schlotterbeck, of Kent Island Fire Company.

But Schlotterbeck says this wasn't an ordinary call.

"Obviously, you realize, hey, this could have been anybody; could have been my child, anyone else's child," said Schlotterbeck.


The teenagers were identified as Cory Passagno, 18; Michael John Ringenbach, 19; Harrison Rhodes Smith, 18; and Tyler Elzey, 19. All of the teenagers were from Kent Island.

"It's a tragedy in your own family," said Schlotterbeck, when speaking of Elzey.

Ezey was a volunteer firefighter with the same company that responded to the call.

"This was Tyler's locker; 350 and something hours worth of training as a volunteer," said Schlotterbeck.

The accident happened at around 4 p.m. Wednesday on Cox Neck Road near Jones Road, according to police.

Investigators said all four victims who died were riding in a Volkswagen four-door sedan.

The driver of the second vehicle, which was a Ford Focus, was identified as 73-year-old Eli Dabich Jr. of Chester.

He was flown to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore where he is listed in serious condition.

Police said he is a professor at the Naval Academy in Annapolis.

Cox Neck Road was closed for more than four hours while the scene was investigated and cleared.

"The complete car was smashed in," said Debra Reed, of Chester.

Reed lives on the same road as the accident, and feared the four victims were her four sons.

"I got several calls from people asking if my boys were alright," said Reed.

As families and friends try to piece their lives together, you can still see pieces of debris from the accident on the road.

"It's a very close knit neighborhood. And so when one hurt, we all hurt," said Reed.

Samantha Ferran, 18, of Chester, went to Kent Island High School with the victims.

"I graduated with these people and you don't expect them to be gone, not even a year."

Now memories of the four boys, and a black fabric draped in front of the empty locker where elzey's gear used to be, is what families and friends are holding on to.

Police said a preliminary investigation indicates the Volkswagen's speed appears to have been a factor in the crash.

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