October 19, 2018
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Former China fire chief dies in Searsmont collision

A 73-year-old driver was killed Friday when his pickup crossed the centerline and slammed head-on into another vehicle in Searsmont, according the Waldo County Sheriff’s Office.

George Studley of China was heading east on Route 3 shortly after 8 p.m. when his truck crossed into oncoming traffic and struck another pickup that was heading west. Studley was the former longtime chief of China’s volunteer fire department.

“We, the members of the department he served for over 50 years, will honor his memory by continuing to uphold our solemn oath to serve the China community by saving lives and protecting property, remembering those that lay the path to our future,” the department said in a Facebook post.

Studley served as chief until 2013, when he became assistant chief.

Studley had a juvenile passenger in the truck, who was taken to an area hospital for treatment.

The driver of the second vehicle, Cory Chase, 45, of Searsmont, owns Darby’s Restaurant in downtown Belfast along with his wife, Lisa. He and two juvenile passengers in the truck with him were initially taken to Waldo County General Hospital for treatment, according to sheriff’s deputies. Police did not release the names of any of the three children involved in the crash.

An update on Chase’s condition and the condition of the juveniles was not immediately available.


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