Parishioners consoled each other Sunday about the deaths of an
elderly couple who were struck and killed by an SUV as they left
church a day earlier.
Vernetta Lang, both 83 and from Caledonia, were hit by the SUV at
around 5:30 p.m. Saturday, police said. They had just attended
Mass at St. Louis Catholic Church in Caledonia, where they were
longtime members, The Journal Times reported (http://bit.ly/1EIIZxr
Two nurses who
attended the service tried to save the couple while paramedics
were on their way, said the church's pastor, the Rev. Mark Danczyk.
Danczyk told the newspaper he was able to administer last rites to
both victims before they died.
32-year-old Caledonia woman who was driving the SUV nor her two
children who were in the vehicle were hurt, Caledonia police Lt.
Gary Larsen said. He said the crash remains under investigation,
but that alcohol is not believed to have been a factor.
The pastor said
the close-knit congregation, which has about 700 families, was in
shock. Parishioners hugged each other after Sunday's services, and
the church paused to pray for those involved in the accident,
tragic," Danczyk said. He said he and many churchgoers ran to
help the couple, who were crossing the road to their car when they
Vernetta Lang was
thrown about 50 feet by the SUV and her husband about 150 feet,
Danczyk said. He said her body was so badly mangled he did not
"We heard a
'thunk' and everybody turned and three young girls saw what
happened. They go, 'There's a body, there's a body,'" Danczyk
told The Associated Press on Sunday. "We went running
State Patrol and Racine County Sheriff's Office are assisting
Caledonia police with the investigation, Larsen said.