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Youth pastor and wife, church member killed in Saturday’s bus crash

Photo: Courtney and Chad Phelps (left), Tonya Weindorf (right)

INDIANAPOLIS – Church officials identified those killed in Saturday’s church bus crash.

They’re identified as youth pastor Chad Phelps, his wife Courtney Phelps and their unborn child. A church member, Tonya Weindorf, was also killed. Church officials said Weindorf went on the trip so that her teenage special needs child could attend. Weindorf said she wanted him to have a good week and stated before crash that it had been a great one. She was a mother of five.

The Phelps’ toddler was injured in the crash but has been treated and released from an area hospital. The crash happened Saturday as a bus carrying a large group of teenagers and young adults from Colonial Hills Baptist Church returned to Indianapolis from a church retreat in Michigan.

The bus was owned by the church and the driver was a church member.

According to a report from the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, the driver of the bus said the brakes failed as the bus went on the off ramp. He said he couldn’t prevent the vehicle from hitting a raised median barrier. The bus was going from the I-465 exit ramp onto Keystone Avenue when it happened.

According to IU Health, three patients from the crash were admitted at Methodist. One is in critical condition, the two others are in good condition. Four patients were admitted at Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health. One of them has been released, and the others remain good condition. The patients at both hospitals are all teenagers.

St. Vincent Health said adult and pediatric patients from the crash were in fair condition.

More than 20 people were hurt. The crash remains under investigation.

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