Amid celebrating the graduation of hundreds Friday night, the BGSU Firelands community found itself mourning the death of a longtime employee.
John Clark, 56, of Huron, the school's coordinator of career services, died Friday afternoon after a two-vehicle crash in Sandusky County.
"He was the best of the best guys," said BGSU Firelands spokesman Dean Schnurr, who knew Clark well. "You couldn't have found a nicer guy than John Clark. The BGSU Firelands family will be mourning his loss for some time."
Clark was driving a 2004 Dodge Grand Caravan west on U.S. 6 near Helena when at about 4:30 p.m. his vehicle crossed the center line and struck an oncoming Ford Escape, according to troopers at the Ohio State Highway Patrol's Fremont post.
The driver of the Escape, Carlla Dixon-Bowers, 49, of Lima, died at the scene.
Clark was flown by medical helicopter from the scene to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center in Toledo, where he was pronounced dead.
The passengers in his mini-van — his wife, Cynthia Clark, 55, and daughter, Jennifer Clark, 25, both of Huron — were taken by ambulance to Fremont Memorial Hospital. They sustained injuries that were not life-threatening, according to troopers.
The crash scene was near County Road 32.
The Clarks were all wearing seat belts, but Dixon-Bowers was not, troopers said. Alcohol is not a suspected factor and the crash remains under investigation.
The crash shut down that section of U.S. 6 for upwards of three hours, with Sandusky County deputies, Helena firefighter and paramedics and Sandusky County EMS assisting at the scene.
Clark had worked in the career services department at BGSU Firelands for years.
"He was a great guy, a great guy," Schnurr said.
He had been actively involved in Huron organizations, including work with the Huron Chamber of Commerce.
"It's tragic and sad," Schnurr said. "You just can't say enough about how good he was, and how sad it is that a such good guy is lost."