UPDATE 9/1/17- Tabytha Hembree, 16, of Pittston, has died from injuries she received in a car crash yesterday (Aug. 31).

According to CentralMaine.com, Hembree, who was a junior at Gardiner Area High School, died after being taken to Maine Medical Center in Portland by Lifefight.

All athletic events at Gardiner Area High School have been cancelled for today (Sept. 1) and there is a candlelight vigil scheduled for 7PM at the high school soccer field. Additionally, the report said that the high school will be open from 10AM to 2PM on Saturday, Sept. 2 where councilors will be available to help students cope with the tragic news.

A young brother and sister were seriously injured around 6:45AM Thursday (Aug. 31) when the SUV they were in collided with a small dump truck on Route 27 in Pittston, according to the Maine State Police.


According to Maine Department of Public Safety Spokesman Steve McCausland, the crash took place at the intersection of Route 27 and Old Cedar Grove Road when the Jeep, which police said was driven by Tabytha Hembree, 16, of Pittston, pulled out in front of the truck.

According to McCausland, the passenger in the Jeep was Hembree's 12-year-old brother, Alexander Hembree, and the two live a short distance from the crash site.

McCausland said that the Hembrees were both on their way to school in Gardiner.

Trooper Klayton Peckham said the truck, which was headed south on Route 27, collided with the driver’s side of the Jeep, and the Jeep then overturned and came to rest on its roof.

Maine Department of Public Safety
Maine Department of Public Safety


McCausland said the Ford dump truck, which was towing a tractor, was operated by Larry Merrifield, 55, of Winthrop.

Both youths in the Jeep had to be freed from the wreck by the Gardiner Fire Department and both were taken to MaineGeneral in Augusta with serious injuries, McCausland said.

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