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Update on Thursday morning's fatal crash in downtown Inverness

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Crash kills local coach, seriously injures another man

By Buster Thompson

Florida Highway Patrol has released details about the Thursday morning crash in downtown which killed a local coach and injured another man.

At about 5:18 a.m., 48-year-old Steven Wesley Ekeli, of Inverness, was driving a 1989 Toyota 4Runner westbound on State Road 44 approaching the intersection with Seminole Avenue, according to a crash report.

At the same time, Daniel Joseph Edmondson, 20, of Inverness, was driving a 1999 Jeep Laredo eastbound on S.R. 44 approaching the same intersection. Edmondson drove into the intersection, traveled into the westbound lanes of S.R. 44 and collided nearly head-on with Ekeli’s vehicle.

Ekeli, who was wearing a seatbelt, died at the scene. Paramedics transported Edmondson, who was also wearing a seatbelt, to Ocala Regional Medical Center for treatment of serious injuries.

Alcohol was not considered a factor in the crash. Charges are pending, according to Florida Highway Patrol.

Police shut down westbound and eastbound lanes of S.R. 44, forcing traffic to be rerouted down side streets for several hours until lanes opened around 10 a.m.

Ekeli for two years served as athletics complex manager of Seven Rivers Christian School’s Warrior Park Sports Complex, according to the school. Ekeli coached soccer in Citrus County for more than 20 years. He was driving to work when the crash occurred.