2017-10-11 / Front Page

Accident claims life of local woman

A combination of a slick roadway and speed caused a Sunday morning accident on Winchester Grade Road that led to the death of a Berkeley Springs woman. The single-vehicle accident took place at about 10 a.m. on October 8.

West Virginia State Trooper Cpl. Jeremy C. McDonald said Erma Schaeffer, 66, of Stillhouse Lane in Berkeley Springs died at Winchester Medical Center after being helicoptered from War Memorial Hospital, where she was taken by the Morgan County Emergency Medical Services (EMS).

Both Schaeffer and her granddaughter, Anna Leader, five, were ejected through the car windows when Schaeffer lost control of the car going around a curve at Highland Ridge and Virginia Line roads.

The car, a two-door Saturn, hit a tree root on the Highland Ridge side, causing the car to flip upside down. Schaeffer was pinned underneath, McDonald said.

EMS personnel were already on the scene when Trooper McDonald arrived, and he was told there were no injuries to the little girl.

McDonald said it was a miracle that she was not hurt.

Leader’s father arrived at the scene and McDonald was told he was going to have her checked further for any injuries.

Neither Schaeffer nor her granddaughter were wearing a seatbelt, police said.

Trooper McDonald said the roadway was closed for about an hour and was reopened at 11:30 a.m.

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