A tragic accident on Saturday morning, Oct. 19, claimed the life of one Wallowa County resident and injured two others. Dylan Denton, 24, died and two others were injured in a two-vehicle crash on Highway 3 in Wallowa County.
Oregon State Police troopers and emergency personnel responded to an 8:08 a.m. call reporting the collision of an Oregon Department of Transportation snowplow and a pickup on the Lewiston Highway near milepost 15.
Denton's black Dodge pickup was northbound on Highway 3 when it collided with a southbound ODOT snowplow, operated by Monte Radford, 69, of Enterprise. The pickup was demolished in the collision. The accident happened at about 8 a.m. near milepost 15, north of the junction of Highway. 3 and Day Ridge Road. OSP's preliminary investigation, and reports from witnesses who arrived at the scene later, indicate that it had been snowing. The OSP report states that the Dodge pickup was rounding a curve when it went out of control, crossed into the southbound lane and collided with the southbound plow.
Denton, 24, of Joseph, died at the scene. The pickup’s passenger, Triston Denning, 19, also of Joseph, was severely injured and life-flighted to St. Alphonsus Regional Medical Center in Boise, Idaho, where he remains, according to Facebook posts, in a medically induced coma for treatment of a brain bleed, a broken femur and extensive facial injuries.
Radford was transported by ambulance to Wallowa Memorial Hospital where he was treated for multiple injuries. According to several co-workers at the Enterprise ODOT office, Radford is home now and eager to return to work. When he does return, he may be on limited duty as he continues to recover.
Denton attended Enterprise High School where he played football and was very active in 4-H and FFA. He had been working at Farm Supply in Enterprise.
“All he did was work,” his sister Amanda Wagner said. “When he wasn’t working he was being with his family, or his cows and his horse. He really loved that horse, and he loved ranching.”
Denton and his girlfriend, Tiffany Smith, were beginning to talk about marriage and starting a family, Wagner said.
The Denton family has set up an account at Community Bank to benefit Triston Denning and support his medical expenses, which will likely be extensive, Wagner said. Donations may be made at any Community Bank by stating that they are for the Triston Denning fund.
In addition, a GoFundMe benefit site has also been established for Triston.
The memorial service for Denton will be held on Saturday, Oct. 26 at 10 a.m. at the Enterprise Christian Church, on Highway 82 about 1 mile south of Enterprise. A reception will follow at Cloverleaf Hall.
The highway was closed for six hours Saturday during the investigation. OSP was assisted by the Wallowa County Sheriff’s Office. The Enterprise Fire Department also responded to the accident.
The OSP investigation of the accident is ongoing. No further information was available for release.