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Retired firefighter killed in four-car wreck at Parallel Parkway, K-7 Highway in KCK

Posted: 11:08 AM, Jul 06, 2017
Updated: 2017-07-07 23:39:19Z

 A retired Johnson County firefighter was killed after a four-vehicle crash Thursday morning.

KCKPD identified the victim as Paul W. Scott of Tonganoxie, Kansas. He worked for the department for 29 years, the Johnson County Fire District No. 2 told 41 Action News. The fire district said Captain Scott started his career in 1969, retiring in 1998. 

The fire district said in a news release: 

"Paul was a great asset to this department and the citizens of the fire district. He was an outstanding firefighter, officer and mentor. He was the kind of officer one should aspire to be; confident, knowledgeable, personable and respected. Our prayers go out to Paul's family in this time of mourning. Paul will be missed by many." 

From above, the twisted wreckage showed the horror that unfolded around 10 a.m. morning at K-7 and Parallel Parkway.

Brett Koberlein and his young family were on their way to Walmart when they saw the crash.

“I saw the white SUV come barreling down the road and I was assuming he was going to stop I get past the intersection, I hear a boom! I get a little bit further so I can see better and next thing I know there are pieces of car everywhere,” Koberlein said.

Don Hiatt was pulling out of his dealership when according to KCK Police, a white SUV traveling westbound on Parallel Parkway slammed into a tan SUV that was waiting at the stoplight.

“If I had been two seconds, I would have probably saved him and it would have been me," Hiatt said. “It's just unfortunate he was in the wrong place and the wrong time,” Hiatt said.

The first collision caused a chain reaction crash into a yellow box truck and another SUV.

The driver of the crushed SUV, Scott, died at the scene. Police say speed was a factor.

Now one of Scott's family friends is urging people to just slow down.

"Life is so short. He went to get his hair cut. Just a simple, everyday thing we all do. It's so tragic that another person was speeding and didn't realize how much he would change the lives of so many people in an instant," Kimberly Scott said.

Her husband worked with Paul Scott for many years at the fire department.

People who live and work around here told 41 Action News Thursday evening this intersection is dangerous and something needs to be done.

“A good number of people everyday come westbound on Parallel at 50, 60 mph if not faster,” Koberlein said.

“Speed limit is 65 and there's no sign that tells them to slow down,” Hiatt said.

They want this tragedy to serve as a wake-up call.

“It's a straight stretch coming from 110th to K7 so I believe another light maybe two maybe somewhere in there,” Koberlein said.

The driver of the white SUV was taken to a local hospital with serious injuries. The drivers of the other vehicles suffered minor injuries. 

Family, Friends mourn death of retired firefighter captain Paul W. Scott

On Friday there were heavy hearts throughout Johnson County's Consolidated Fire District Number Two as they mourned one of their brothers--retired Captain Paul W. Scott.

"Anytime you lose somebody even it's a retiree who been retired since 1998 he's still part of the family so it's a difficult time for us," Deputy Chief Jeff Scott with the department said.

On Thursday, police said a speeding white SUV slammed into Paul's car causing a chain reaction crash with two other vehicles and killing the 68-year-old grandfather.

"He was the type of officer that as a younger firefighter when I started he's the guy I wanted to emulate," Deputy Chief Jeff Scott said.

Paul's daughter told 41 Action News Friday her father was out running errands before the crash, getting ready for a weekend birthday party he had planned for his wife, Sharon.

Besides the love for his family, he dedicated thirty years to saving lives and property as a firefighter.

"He was one of those guys that you want protecting you--he's one of those guys you want on your security force whether it's fire, police, ems he's just that giving self-sacrifice personality," Battalion Chief Ed Barger with the department said.

The intersection where he the deadly wreck occurred is familiar to KCKPD. According to the department, since April 2016, officers have responded to 15 non-injury crashes and 3 injury crashes at K-7 and Parallel Parkway.

Paul's family said detectives have told them, the person that caused this is expected face involuntary manslaughter charges.

Funeral plans for Paul Scott have not been announced yet.