Harrison County

Man who died in Long Beach crash was visiting his son on the Coast, deputy coroner says

A Louisiana man died and three others were injured when the car he was driving pulled in front of a pickup on U.S. 90 at South Island View Avenue, officials said.

Wilbur Daigle, 86, of Ponchatoula, died at the scene of the 2:49 p.m. crash on Saturday, Harrison County Chief Deputy Coroner Brian Switzer said Monday.

Daigle was driving a 2007 Toyota Camry and was traveling with two relatives from England while visiting family on the Mississippi Coast, Switzer said.

The crash occurred in front of his son’s house, said Daigle’s granddaughter, Angelique Richardson of Ponchatoula. That’s the home of Doug and Johanna Daigle, Richardson’s parents.

“My father saw the accident and my mom yelled out, ‘these people need help,’ and they ran out to help,” she said.

“My grandfather was so healthy and so alive. It’s so shocking for all of us.”

Wilbur Daigle had married a woman from England after his first wife died, Richardson said. His female passenger is his second wife’s daughter, and the male passenger in the back seat is the woman’s son.

“My grandfather drove them over to the Coast so they could put their feet in the water,” she said.

The collision occurred after the car was at the stop sign at the foot of South Island View and entered the highway in front of a westbound 1995 Nissan truck, Assistant Police Chief Bruce Carver said.

The drivers and the two passengers in the car were wearing seat belts, Carver said.

Daigle’s female passenger was in critical condition, Carver said. She was first taken to Memorial Hospital at Gulfport and then to the University of South Alabama Medical Center in Mobile. The woman’s son was treated at Memorial, he said.

The driver of the pickup was taken to a hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening, Carver said.

The Gulfport Police Department is handling accident reconstruction, he said.

Carver said investigators obtained a blood-alcohol sample from the driver of the pickup and the coroner’s office will have a toxicology test performed on the deceased. Those tests are required by state law after a fatal crash.

Daigle is the second person to die on U.S. 90 in Long Beach in three weeks. A 76-year-old Long Beach woman was killed Oct. 2 when she was struck by a vehicle as she walked across the highway in front of the Long Beach Harbor after a Cruisin’ The Coast event.

Robin Fitzgerald: 228-896-2307, @robincrimenews

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