Chronology of 1979 accidents involving teens that prompted Project Graduation

• April 4: A one-car accident at Norway Lake killed 18-year-old Kevin McNally and injured 16-and 17-year-old girls from Mechanic Falls and a 17-year-old boy from Oxford, who was saved by a man who held the victim’s head above water to keep him from drowning after the car flew 8-feet in the air and into the water. McNally was discovered dead in his seat under the murky water. McNally was reportedly driving 100-to-110-miles per hour at the time of the crash – just one week after he celebrated his 18th birthday.

• May 8: Two girls from West Paris, ages 16 and 17, were seriously injured in a one-car crash on Hebron Road.

• May 11: Craig Howard, 19, of Harrison, was killed and two others injured when his speeding car went off a sharp curve on Route 118 just before Greenwood Road in Norway, flew 20 feet into the air, crashed into a granite wall and burst into flames. The fire chief arrived on the scene with a fire extinguisher and was was able to save a 19- and 20-year-old husband and wife from the burning Pontiac Firebird.

• May 21: Charles Bonney, 25, of Bryant Pond and Daniel Herrick, 26, of Woodstock were killed heading north on Main Street in Norway when their car lost control and smashed into a utility pole. Only Herrick’s brother of South Paris survived.

• June 4: David Blanchard, 18, a 1978 Telstar High School graduate, was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol after his car plunged off a 10-foot embankment into water. Killed were 18-year-old Bradley Boyce, who was found dead in the water, 15-year-old Susan Osgood of Locke Mills, 16-year-old Felicia Moffitt of Bethel, 17-year-old Gerald Swan of Locke Mills and 18-year-old Eric Wentworth of Bryant Pond, all students or former at the high school in Bethel.

• June 14: Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School commencement. More than 100 students show up for the first Project Graduation party.


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