Two people died in a multi-car crash at 12:37 p.m. Monday on the southbound side of the Meadowbrook State Parkway, between the Southern State Parkway and Babylon Turnpike, according to New York State Police.
John Elder, 76, of Freeport, and Edward Ross, 65, of North Bellmore, were struck and killed by a GMC pick-up truck driven by Robert Beodeker, 50, of Aquebogue, officials said.
Elder and Ross were traveling inside a Nissan Maxima when the car became disabled and stopped on the side of the parkway, outside of a traffic lane. They had left the Nissan when the pick-up truck that Beodeker was driving hit the car and Elder and Ross, who were standing near it.
“The gentleman that was traveling southbound either didn’t observe or failed to see that the lanes were merging, and he struck the vehicle that was broken down and was being worked on by the two individuals that were killed,” said Capt. Kevin Buchal of the New York State Police in a video of a news conference posted on fios1news.com.
Beodeker, who is campus associate dean for student services at Suffolk Community College and president of the North Fork Community Theatre in Mattituck, was charged with reckless driving and aggravated unlicensed operation in the second degree for driving without a valid license.
Beodeker, who made his first court appearance on Tuesday, was held on $1,000 bail. Reportedly, he had previously had his license suspended.
The Meadowbrook Parkway was closed between the Southern State and Babylon Turnpike until 6:40 p.m., tying up traffic north of the Southern State for miles.