Gospel singer's wife, grandson killed in Pa. crash

July 6, 2008 7:35:01 AM PDT
A gospel singer was critically injured in a crash in central Pennsylvania that killed his wife and a wrong-way driver, police said.

The Rev. Timothy Wright, 61, was injured Friday night along with his 14-year-old grandson, D.J. Wright, and both were taken to Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, according to a hospital spokesman.

Betty Wright, 58, of Roosevelt, N.Y., died in the three-vehicle crash on Interstate 80 in Greene Township, state police said.

The driver of the wrong-way car, John Pick, 44, of Lewisburg, also died, police said.

Timothy Wright has released more than a dozen gospel recordings; his latest album, "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus," came out last year. He is the pastor at Grace Tabernacle Christian Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.

"We are receiving calls from all over the country," Phillip Culver, Wright's personal assistant, told NY1 News. "Pastor Timothy Wright is a well-known icon across the country for his music, for his ministry, and for his work in this community."

New York music agent Will Bogle called the news "completely deflating."

"He's been a mentor to me in ways he probably doesn't even know," said Bogle, who represents gospel performer Ricky Dillard. "He's a giving man; I've not seen a person more tangible to his church, to his community, to his friends. Everyone I know is deeply touched and saddened."

The Wrights were returning from a Church of God in Christ conference in Detroit, said Leroy Johnson, a trustee at Grace Tabernacle.

The couple has five sons, and the family asked that no other information be released, Johnson said Saturday.

A passenger in the third vehicle is in fair condition, said Geisinger spokesman Thomas Schaeffer.