Pedestrian killed in city

By Tom Joyce -

A 19-year-old woman died Sunday night after being hit by a car while trying to cross U.S. 52 near Mayberry Mall in Mount Airy, authorities say.

The victim, identified as Cynthia Nicole Bryant of Sparta, was with a male companion — Cody Epperson, 20, of 1667 Bryant Road, Mount Airy — who also was struck by the vehicle and taken to a Winston-Salem hospital.

“They actually ran across the highway,” Surry County Emergency Services Director John Shelton said of the incident that occurred around 6 p.m.

The two pedestrians were struck by a 2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser near the Merita Street intersection of U.S. 52 while in the southbound portion of the four-lane highway, just north of that intersection.

“I think they came from across the road at Kmart, from the parking lot,” Shelton said.

“She (Bryant) went over the front end of the vehicle and struck the windshield.”

Epperson is said to have suffered a pelvis injury, but his condition was believed to be non-life-threatening when transported to Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem.

The driver of the Chrysler PT Cruiser, Patty Ann Johnson, 56, of Siloam Road in Siloam, was not injured.

Meanwhile, intense efforts unfolded at the scene to save Bryant’s life, which involved Dr. Jason Stopyra, local medical director and a trauma physician, who happened to be in the area of the accident when it occurred.

“We attempted very aggressive resuscitation on her,” Shelton said. “We did a blood transfusion and everything in an attempt to save her, which was unsuccessful.”

Bryant died at the scene.

Police investigation

An investigation of the pedestrian facility was still under way Monday by the Mount Airy Police Department, with no charges having been filed.

However, all indications pointed to the cause being accidental with no factors such as speed, alcohol or drug use being involved, according to Capt. Barry VanHoy.

Darkness was a factor, with Daylight Saving Time ending on Sunday morning.

“The young lady that was hit, she was wearing dark clothing,” VanHoy said, which was coupled with the fact that the intersection where the fatality occurred is “pretty busy.”

This posed problems for Johnson, the driver of the car. “The woman said she just did not see her (Bryant),” VanHoy added.

“At this point, it looks like it was totally an accident.”

However, a routine procedure is under way by city police that is done in cases involving traffic fatalities, which includes an accident reconstruction and then submitting the results to the Surry County District Attorney’s Office.

“Hopefully, they can wrap that up in the next few days,” VanHoy said of the reconstruction process of taking measurements at the scene and assembling other data.

Tom Joyce may be reached at 336-415-4693 or on Twitter @Me_Reporter.

By Tom Joyce

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