Woman, two Dublin Coffman students killed in collision between car and cement truck

Dean Narciso
ThisWeek group
Three people, including two Dublin Coffman High School students, died in head-on crash involving a Ford Focus and a cement truck Oct. 31 in Delaware County.

A 34-year-old woman, her son and another teenager – both Dublin Coffman High School students – died over the weekend when the vehicle they were in collided with a cement truck on state Route 315 in southern Delaware County.

Pronounced dead at the scene Oct. 31 were the driver of the Ford Focus, Adela Garcia-Guijon, 34, and her 14-year-old son, Emiliano "Francisco" Cipriano, who lived in northwest Columbus.

A backseat passenger, 15-year-old Juan Perez-Jijon, a classmate of Cipriano at Dublin Coffman, was critically injured in the crash. He died Nov. 1 at OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital.

Dash-cam video footage from the cement truck, driven by Ronald Hipsher, 60, of Caledonia in Marion County, recorded the crash as it developed along Route 315 about a quarter-mile north of state Route 750 near Powell, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

At about 1:30 p.m. Oct. 31, the video showed the Ford Focus traveling northbound on Route 315, then suddenly veering off the right side of the road onto the gravel and grass berm. The driver over-corrected, and the car fishtailed back onto the roadway into the truck, crashing into it broadside on the passenger side, said Sgt. James King, of the patrol's Delaware post.

The cement truck was traveling 44 mph in the 45 mph zone. The Focus appeared to be going faster, King said.

Hipsher, the truck driver, was shaken, but not injured, King said.

Garcia-Guijon's sister, who speaks little English, told an interpreter that the three were headed to a house-cleaning job her sister had at a home in Delaware County. It was unclear if they were self-employed or working for an agency, King said

A GPS device in the car still was operating after the crash, signaling voice directions in Spanish, he said.

Dublin Coffman principal Mike Ulring described both of the students as "very outgoing, friendly and positive."

"They just had a great outlook," he said. "They loved sports, including football and wrestling, but I'm not sure they were participating this year."

A note sent to parents notifying them of the crash described Garcia-Guijon as the mother of Cipriano, who went by Francisco at the high school.

The patrol was trying to piece together the connection with Perez-Jijon, the backseat passenger. King said he was told that Garcia-Guijon was Perez-Dijon's caretaker and that both of his parents had died, but the investigation had not yet confirmed that.

Grief counselors were being made available to Dublin Coffman students and staff, both in-person and remotely. The school district is using a hybrid-learning model.

Ulring said the loss is especially challenging.

"We stay together. We can't let any of this divide us," he said. "We all need each other. Days like today are a perfect example of that."

dnarciso@dispatch.com

@DeanNarciso