SOUTHERN INDIANA — Earl Gresham was a caring man, one who looked out for others and always had a positive word to say.
That’s how Terry Lynch remembers the kind-hearted gentleman who served as the pastor of Faith and Love Church located next door to her home in New Albany.
Lynch said she was “just devastated” Friday after learning Gresham was the pedestrian who was struck and killed on Interstate 65 northbound around 4 a.m. Friday while attempting to assist a family member.
“I am totally shocked. Just shocked. It’s just so hard to put into words,” Lynch said. “He was just a very special man. He deserves so much honor because he would do anything for anyone.”
Gresham, 73, of New Albany, was the father of the stranded motorist at the 12.4 mile marker on the interstate.
According to the preliminary investigation, two Indiana State Police Troopers were stationary on the right shoulder of I-65 northbound near the 11.8 mile marker awaiting a tow truck to remove a vehicle from a previous Operating While Intoxicated arrest, a press released from the Indiana State Police reported.
“At the same time, a third trooper was also stationary on I-65 northbound near the 12.4 mile marker assisting a stranded motorist who advised she had run out of fuel and had contacted her father to assist her,” the release said.
As the two troopers waited for the assistance of a tow truck, Gresham stopped his vehicle on I-65 near the 11.8 mile marker, exited his vehicle and attempted to cross all six lanes of I-65 in an apparent attempt to contact the troopers, the ISP news release said.
After making it across all southbound lanes and over the median barrier, Gresham was struck and killed by a green 2007 Camry in the middle lane of northbound I-65. It is believed he was then struck by an unidentified tractor trailer which continued northbound.
Indiana State Police crash reconstructionist arrived to investigate the crash, and all northbound lanes of I-65 were closed until approximately 7:45 a.m. The crash remains under investigation.
Lynch said Gresham was an active man who she would see outside mowing the church’s lawn and tending to the grounds. He would always have a smile and a wave for her and her husband, Randall.
“When you see people like him all the time and always say, ‘Hi, how are you today?’ that’s such a nice relationship to have that you cherish,” she said. “He was always willing to offer a hand to help with whatever you need. He was such a good person. This is a tremendous loss.”
Lynch said she sends his family her condolences and her love.
“At least we know he was doing what he loved to do – helping people,” she said.