(10-17-17) The following appeared on the Bellefontaine Police Department Facebook page-

Dear Family and Friends,

On Saturday night, October 14, 2017, we lost a very special person in our agency. Dispatcher Krista McDonald, age 41, was volunteering as an EMT in Hardin County when the ambulance she was operating was struck by another vehicle. Krista’s ambulance was rolled and she was thrown from the vehicle. She died at the scene.

Krista was a dedicated public servant, who gave her life to helping others. Whether it was through her skills as a trained medic, a 911 dispatcher for three different agencies over the years, or helping on the family farm, Krista loved life! Krista enjoyed talking about her family and how proud she was of her husband and two daughters.

We not only lost a friend and a co-worker, but we truly lost a community servant. In Krista’s honor, we ask that you take time today to say thanks for the brave men and women of law enforcement and the courageous volunteers who help staff the numerous volunteer fire agencies in our surrounding area.

Please join us in celebrating Krista’s life on Thursday, October 19, 2017 from 2:00-6:00 PM, at the First Church of God, 1000 East Brown Avenue, Bellefontaine for viewing hours. Her funeral will begin at 1:00 PM on Friday, October 20, 2017, also at the church.

Bellefontaine Police Chief Brandon Standley:

“The Bellefontaine Police Department suffered a tragic loss tonight. Krista McDonald, a long-time dispatcher for our agency was killed when the ambulance she was riding in collided with another vehicle in Hardin County.

“Dispatcher McDonald volunteered for years as a paramedic and enjoyed her time helping others. Krista was an extremely talented, hard-working and dedicated public servant who gave her life doing what she loved to do.

“Krista will be sadly missed by her BPD family. The members of our agency send our condolences to Krista’s family and friends through this difficult time.”

Krista McDonald was driving an ambulance south on State Route 292 when a westbound vehicle on State Route 273 being operated by Rachael Willeke, of Belle Center, failed to yield the right of way and struck the ambulance broadside. Both McDonald and another EMT, Peggy Eastman, were ejected from the vehicle. McDonald was pronounced dead at the scene. Eastman and a passenger in the other car identified as Alexander Young, were both flown to OSU Medical Center with life threatening injuries. Eastman is in critical but stable condition. Young is listed in critical condition.

The crash  remains under investigation by the Hardin County Sheriff’s Office and the Multi County Crash Investigation Team.

Jerry Fenning has volunteered locally and worked as an EMT in the Mercer County area, the night before this accident took place he shared this with the Outlook with his concerns about those caring for injured-

If you come up on the scene of any accident or emergency please respect the privacy of the sick or injured and the first responders that are there rendering potentially lifesaving treatment to those in need. Remember that could be your loved one that is receiving the much needed care. Instead of videotaping the scene and the care being provided for you and your friends viewing pleasure, how about you put your phone down, step back, say a prayer for those involved and let the trained responders do their job.