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Family mourns newlyweds killed in car crash

By Catherine Hawley, Reporter, news@wfmz.com
Published On: Aug 15 2013 09:07:08 PM CDT
Updated On: Aug 16 2013 04:41:07 AM CDT

For Anne and James Reid, it's like their biggest nightmare come true.

For Anne and James Reid, it's like their biggest nightmare come true.

On Sunday, the Lopatcong Township, New Jersey parents learned their son and his wife were killed in a car crash in North Carolina.

Will Reid, 26, and Jamie Soukup Reid, 25, were riding to the airport in a Town Car after a friend's wedding in Asheville, when the driver lost control and crashed into a tree.

Investigators say Jamie was killed on impact, and Will passed away a short time later at the hospital.

The driver, 45-year-old Rodney Koon, survived the wreck and is recovering at the hospital.

"Something I don't ever want to have to go through again," shared Anne. "And I still dream about it unfortunately."

Will was the Valedictorian for the Phillipsburg High School class of 2005. He met Jamie at the University of Pennsylvania where they both graduated in 2012.

The pair were both teachers in Philadelphia, choosing to work at inner city schools. Will was a math teacher with People For People Charter School. Jamie was teaching at Harrity Elementary, a Mastery Charter School.

"They would light up the room, together they would really light up the room," recalled James. "My son was a pretty smart, pretty amazing person, but when he was with his wife it was something to watch."

The young couple was married on May 26th. They recently announced a baby was on the way.

"Made a tragic situation even more tragic," added Anne.

Jamie's parents, Ron and Kay Soukup, just got into town from the Seattle, WA area. The Reids joined them in Philadelphia Thursday to sift through their children's Broad Street apartment.

"You saw so much promise, you saw what could have been," Anne said. "You saw how much was ripped away from not only them, but everybody else."

The family says it's the support from friends and strangers that's keeping them going and strong. Numerous cards, telephone calls and postings online bring them solace.

"People you haven't talked to in years, they just call and say we're coming," explained James. "And that's really the only thing that keeps you going."

A memorial service for Will and Jamie will be held at the Doyle-Devlin Funeral Home in Phillipsburg Saturday. Another service for the couple is set for Sunday, August 25th in Washington State.

The families are honoring the couple by helping future students through two scholarship funds:

-William and Jamie Reid Scholarship Fund for the Valedictorian, c/o Phillipsburg High School, 200 Hillcrest Boulevard, Phillipsburg, NJ 08865
-Jamie Soukup Reid Memorial Scholarship Fund, Whitman College, Walla Walla, WA 99362