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Fatal crash blamed on ice

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By Christopher Brooke, Reporter

HILLSVILLE — Black ice on U.S 58 claimed a long-time dairy delivery driver while on his rounds early Monday, Virginia State Police troopers say.

Guy Horton, 70, of Woodlawn, driving a delivery truck owned by H&S Dairy Distributors of Mount Airy, N.C., lost control of the vehicle on a glaze of black ice in a curve near Princess Drive at about 6:15 a.m., according to First Sgt. Mike Musser.

Police believe that Horton was heading to businesses in Vesta to drop off supplies.

The weather conditions, which also included fog, contributed to the accident.

The truck went off the road to the left and overturned into some trees, with the box becoming detached from the truck chassis. Horton was ejected from the vehicle.

Authorities called for the medical examiner, and they believed that Horton died instantly.

The truck was heavily damaged, and all the contents of the truck were sent to the landfill for disposal.

Horton was well known among local businesses after his long career, and word of the accident spread in Hillsville quickly.

Company officials arrived on the scene as the clean-up was ensuing, and H&S Dairy Distributors President Gary Hamm remembered Horton as a dedicated and hard working individual.

"[The company] changed hands a few times but he'd been delivering milk for the same outfit for 40 years," Hamm said. "He was just a super workhorse, and he was a super man.

"I not only lost an employee, I also lost a friend."

Wrecks involving black ice seemed to hit Carroll County motorists hard, with six reported, police said. Many of the accidents resulted in property damage.

Black ice often proves treacherous for drivers, worse than snow, because it catches people traveling at normal speeds unaware and leads to severe accidents, Musser said.

Trooper S.O. Rector was the investigating officer.