On May 4, 2019 at approximately 10:03 a.m. Betty Ritter, age 66 of Lancaster, was driving south on STH 61 just approaching Stage Road. A red car was in front of her slowing to turn south on Stage Road. Ritter slowed behind the red car.
Ritter saw in her rear view mirror a white truck behind her and a motorcycle behind the white truck. Ritter stated that as the red car turned south she moved to the left to pass the red car, in a passing zone.
James Giesen, age 26 of Cassville, WI, who was operating his 2015 Yamaha motorcycle, passed the white truck and struck Ritter in the back left hand side. Giesen was thrown from the motorcycle. Ritter was wearing her seat belt and was not injured in the crash. Giesen was unknown to have any eye protection on but stated he does not wear a helmet. Giesen was thrown from the motorcycle and was transported to Grant Regional Health Center by the Lancaster Rescue Squad, later Medflighted to another hospital.
Assisting at the scene was the Lancaster Fire Dept. Both vehicles had to be towed from the scene. This crash remains under investigation.
Update: On May 6, 2019 the Grant County Sheriff's Office was notified that James Giesen passed away at UW Hospital due to complications from his injuries. This is the 3rd fatal crash in Grant County in 2019, with a total of 4 people killed.