‘Gone too soon:’ Friend remembers Arab man killed in Huntsville wreck with dump truck

Huntsville police said the dump truck driver did not have the right of way when he turned left onto Hobbs Island Road, striking the man's truck in the intersection.

Posted: Oct 10, 2019 6:42 PM
Updated: Oct 11, 2019 7:41 AM

Friends and family are trying to cope with the sudden death of their loved one. Chase Pannell died in a crash on his way to work Thursday.

The crash happened on South Memorial Parkway at Hobbs Island Road. Huntsville police say a dump truck driver for Reed Contracting Services T-boned Pannell when he didn't have the right of way.

Courtesy of Nicole Nix

WAAY 31 learned Chase Pannell was a manager at Red Rocket Express car wash in Huntsville. Kyle Bailey, who works at the car wash, said he's still struggling to come to terms with the wreck.

"Gone too soon. We did our best just to get by yesterday, and today, it doesn't really feel real," he said.

He says Chase was always focused on work, and his fiance, Nicole, was his world.

"That's all he did was work, and he would bring her flowers once a week for no reason. She was the most important thing to him," he said.

Bailey says his boss was always on his case about following the rules of the road, which makes Wednesday's death all the more heart-breaking. He says when he saw Chase's mangled truck, he knew his boss had no chance of preventing the crash.

"He definitely was paying attention. There is nothing he could have done about it. It just makes me sick for real," he said.

Huntsville police say it appears the driver in a dump truck for Reed Contracting turned left from the Parkway onto Hobbs Island Road into oncoming traffic when he didn't have the right of way.

Bailey said seeing the damage to his manager's truck brought up a lot of questions.

"It's like they didn't even try to stop. Also, I didn't know the driver, didn't know what he was doing. What was going through his mind? When you're in control of a vehicle like that, you have to be aware, you have to be paying attention, because you can do exactly this, take someone from their family and their people that love him," he said.

Bailey said it hasn't sunk in yet that Chase is gone.

"Every time I hear a loud truck going down the road, I just look out the window and expect to see his truck pulling in the parking lot," he said.

He says doesn't think he'll ever have a boss or friend like him again.

"Chase was a good man. He was one of the best people I ever had the pleasure to meet. There will never be another person like him," he said.

WAAY 31 checked with the federal regulator that monitors these types of crashes. We learned Reed Contracting has been involved in 13 crashes prior to Wednesday.

Two of those crashes resulted in injuries.

Huntsville/Redstone
Partly Cloudy
42° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 42°
Muscle Shoals
Clear
40° wxIcon
Hi: 52° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 37°
Huntsville/Madison
Clear
39° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 35°
Decatur
Clear
41° wxIcon
Hi: 51° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 37°
Fort Payne
Partly Cloudy
37° wxIcon
Hi: 51° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 37°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 424028

Reported Deaths: 6121
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson62258921
Mobile30381549
Madison27160186
Tuscaloosa20779267
Montgomery19049305
Shelby18572114
Baldwin16346182
Lee12515101
Morgan12260113
Etowah11757168
Calhoun11161200
Marshall10199107
Houston8630148
Cullman8036105
Limestone802874
Elmore7849101
DeKalb768897
Lauderdale760083
St. Clair7555120
Talladega6180108
Walker5903174
Jackson581341
Colbert533573
Blount530883
Autauga519855
Coffee443956
Dale398581
Franklin367548
Chilton337665
Russell331710
Covington327768
Escambia319342
Dallas303396
Chambers284269
Clarke282133
Tallapoosa2617107
Pike249429
Marion246250
Lawrence244247
Winston227335
Bibb216247
Geneva202535
Marengo199729
Pickens197031
Hale176442
Barbour173036
Butler170258
Fayette169026
Cherokee160530
Henry154421
Monroe145617
Randolph140735
Washington137726
Clay126745
Crenshaw119544
Lamar118219
Cleburne117723
Macon115035
Lowndes110735
Wilcox103121
Bullock99128
Perry97719
Conecuh94420
Sumter89126
Greene76123
Coosa60515
Choctaw51524
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 687751

Reported Deaths: 8430
CountyCasesDeaths
Shelby765191128
Davidson70950665
Knox38829400
Hamilton34687327
Rutherford33228285
Unassigned22839126
Williamson21449140
Sumner18262232
Out of TN1618380
Montgomery14450149
Wilson14449157
Sullivan12606211
Blount11914125
Washington11911191
Maury10962123
Bradley1079191
Sevier10495108
Putnam9952136
Madison9131179
Robertson764585
Hamblen6990109
Anderson6792103
Greene6598108
Tipton621065
Gibson5639111
Coffee562882
Cumberland540072
Dickson536378
Bedford532589
Roane521279
Carter5109112
Lawrence508969
McMinn508573
Warren498753
Loudon495550
Jefferson477975
Dyer474982
Monroe457162
Hawkins446268
Franklin412161
Obion399679
Fayette397851
Rhea382456
Lincoln379444
Marshall345436
Cocke343856
Weakley339948
Cheatham336230
Henderson333057
Campbell324540
Giles321772
White311343
Carroll310459
Hardeman309452
Hardin298147
Lauderdale293731
Macon288850
Wayne261319
Henry260858
Overton253843
DeKalb242341
Haywood239845
McNairy238642
Smith231327
Trousdale228814
Marion228431
Scott225431
Hickman223534
Fentress212831
Claiborne212729
Grainger209035
Johnson201832
Morgan189015
Crockett180738
Bledsoe174210
Chester173837
Unicoi167043
Cannon157719
Lake155519
Decatur147326
Polk143617
Union139422
Grundy139321
Sequatchie137118
Humphreys132817
Benton132135
Lewis127520
Meigs114416
Stewart105520
Jackson104021
Perry94725
Clay93926
Houston93922
Moore8009
Pickett67919
Van Buren6607
Hancock4056

Community Events