Amy Cunningham
Police are hoping to question the driver of a pickup truck as a possible witness to Wednesday evening’s collision on U.S. 56 Highway that took the lives of two Gardner residents.
The truck is described as a light colored, full-size pickup with two bumper stickers – one on the rear bumper with a picture of Dale Earnhardt and the other on the back window that reads “In Memory of Dale Earnhardt.”  The Johnson County Sheriff’s Department is calling the driver of the truck a witness to the accident.
One witness has come forward to provide police with information, however, because the crash took place during rush hour officials believe that many drivers may have witnessed the wreck or the events leading up to the wreck.
“Right now we have one person that we’ve talked to, but we know, at that time of day, there were more people there who witnessed it,” said Deputy Tom Erickson of the Johnson County Sheriff’s Department.  “It would be very helpful if they would come forward.  People see things differently, and we know this, sometimes it takes several witnesses to put together a full picture.”
Yesterday the department conducted sweeps in the area, looking for potential witnesses, focusing their canvass on 56 Highway between Moonlight and Interstate 35.  The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office Accident Reconstruction Team is working on the case.  Erickson said that reconstructing the events can take up to 10 days to complete.
To contact the Sheriff’s Department call the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-TIPS or call the office at 913-715-5560.
The accident occurred just after 5 p.m. Wednesday evening when a

Hannah Apperson

westbound pick-up truck, driven by 63- year-old Milton Whaley of Gardner, and an eastbound passenger car, driven by 41-year-old Lisa Apperson, also of Gardner, collided.
Thirteen-year-old Hannah Apperson, a passenger in the car, was pronounced dead at the scene.   Hailey Apperson, 10, was transported in critical condition via helicopter to Children’s Mercy Hospital, Cooper Apperson, 6, was taken to Children’s Mercy and Lisa Apperson was transported to Overland Park Regional Medical Center.  All three remain hospitalized.
Whaley, the driver of the truck, suffered critical injuries after being ejected from his vehicle.  He was transported to Overland Park Regional Hospital where he later passed away from his injuries.
Two area banks have established funds to help defray accident-related costs for the Apperson family.
Donations to the Apperson family can be directed to Central National Bank care of “The Apperson Family Fund” or “Apperson Benefit Fund” at Gardner National Bank.
Central National Bank Main
205 N. Moonlight
Gardner, KS 66030
Phone (913) 856-3201
Fax (913) 856-3220
Central National Bank Wal-mart
1725 E. Santa Fe
Gardner, KS 66030
Gardner National Bank
840 E. Main
Gardner, KS 66030
(913) 856-7199
(888) 775-6956
Memorial contributions may be made to the Whaley Memorial Fund in care of  Whaley’s funeral has been scheduled for 9 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 14 at Bruce Funeral Home.  The visitation will be held from 6-8 p.m. Monday, Dec. 13 at the funeral home.