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Aug-02-2009 02:22printcomments

Salem Woman Fatally Injured After Falling Off Motorcycle (PHOTOS)

The single vehicle crash happened on Highway 22, west of Santiam Pass Junction‏.

Fatal motorcycle crash
Crash scene on Highway 22 near milepost 70
Photograph Source: Oregon State Police

(SANTIAM PASS, Ore.) - Police say a Salem-area woman died after she apparently fell off the motorcycle she was a passenger on as she and her husband traveled on Highway 22 west of the Santiam Junction.

Oregon State Police troopers investigating the crash have not confirmed why the woman fell off the motorcycle.

OSP Sergeant Dale Young says Saturday at approximately 9:45 a.m. a Harley Davidson motorcycle operated by 46-year old Terry Melton of Salem, was eastbound on Highway 22 near milepost 70 with his wife, 53-year old Virginia Melton, as a passenger.

"Preliminary information indicates the operator noticed his wife slumping behind him and tried to hold on to her to keep her from falling off the motorcycle. Despite his attempt to keep her on, she fell off onto the highway."

Young says after the passenger fell off, the operator lost control and laid the motorcycle on its side and slid an unknown distance on the highway. Virginia Melton was pronounced deceased at the scene. Terry Melton was transported by air ambulance to St. Charles Medical Center in Bend with non-life threatening injuries. Hospital staff advised he has been released from the hospital.

Both were wearing protective crash helmets.

OSP troopers from the Salem Area Command office are continuing the investigation with the assistance of officers from Marion County Sheriff's Office and Keizer Police Department.

The Lyons Fire Department and ODOT assisted at the scene. Traffic was directed through the area until about 3:00 p.m.

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Mike Staten August 5, 2009 12:37 pm (Pacific time)

Ginny was a member of our Boy Scout troop for many years. We loved her dearly and will miss her greatly. Terry, you and the rest of the family are in our thoughts and prayers.

Anonymous August 3, 2009 11:34 pm (Pacific time)

As a fellow rider it is really sad to see things like this happen. My heart goes out to Terry and his family. I heard that there was a boy scout troop that was not very far behind them were returning from a weeklong campout was helping out.

Fran August 3, 2009 3:56 pm (Pacific time)

This was a very dear friend. What a horrible thing to happen. I feel so much pain for the family. She was such a wonderful person and loved by so many

L August 3, 2009 1:17 pm (Pacific time)

We were in the backup, just a few hundred feet from the crash. We were hoping that it was "just" a bad injury. Mr Melton is in my thoughts. I'll second the thanks for the young men who were helping. They came to give those of us stuck in the backup info, letting us know that it would "be a while" and when traffic got moving, it was done efficiently.

Rings August 2, 2009 3:28 pm (Pacific time)

Good article. Very well written

Anonymous August 2, 2009 12:11 pm (Pacific time)

One thing to note on this story. Linn County SAR team was one of first on Scene returning from over night training camp out.They called for medical help and directed traffic until others arrived.Just one more life saving mission these youth have helped with.They are amazing. Thank you Linn county SAR!

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