Carpenter dies in Friday crash


DEL NORTE — Del Norte resident Kenneth Carpenter, 77, died Friday evening in a two-vehicle crash on Colorado Highway 112 and Rio Grande County Road 5 West, nine miles northeast of Del Norte.

The Colorado State Patrol (CSP) responded to the crash on June 30 at 4:45 p.m.

CSP investigation at the scene revealed a 2001 Toyota RAV4 was northbound on Rio Grande County Road 5 West. The vehicle failed to stop at the posted stop sign at the intersection of Colorado Highway 112, according to CSP. 

A 2007 Honda 4 door was westbound on Colorado Highway 112. The front of the Honda collided with the right side of the Toyota. Both vehicles traveled off the north side of the road and came to rest on their wheels.

Carpenter, the driver of the Toyota, was not seatbelted and was ejected from the vehicle, according to CSP. Saguache County Coroner Tom Perrin pronounced him dead at the scene. 

The driver of the Honda was transported to the Rio Grande Hospital with moderate injuries. She was identified as Meryl Tolsma, 33, of Salida. She was wearing her seatbelt.

Alcohol is not believed to be a contributing factor in the crash. Speed is not believed to be a factor. The crash remains under investigation. 

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