Friends, family, neighbors and fellow firefighters are mourning the loss of one of their own and a well-known farmer who lived in the New Hope community of Wayne County.
Donald Gray died last Thursday morning on the US 70 Bypass between Parkstown Road and the Wayne-Lenoir County line. He was following one of his farm tractors when he was struck from behind by a UPS tractor-trailer.
The impact caused Gray to run off the right shoulder of the road and flip several times, according to first responders. He was ejected from his service truck and pronounced dead at the scene.
The UPS driver was not injured.
El-Roy and New Hope fire fighters assisted at the scene.
Gray served as chief of the New Hope Fire Department from 2006-2016.
The North Carolina State Highway Patrol and DMV Motor Carrier Officers are investigating the wreck.
Charges are pending on the outcome of the investigation.