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Two Sterling College students killed in Reno County crash

Esther Jenkerson, left, and Xavier Bradford were killed in a vehicle crash Monday morning west of Hutchinson. Both were students at Sterling College.
Esther Jenkerson, left, and Xavier Bradford were killed in a vehicle crash Monday morning west of Hutchinson. Both were students at Sterling College. Courtesy photo

Two Sterling College students are dead after a Monday morning crash in Reno County.

Esther Jenkerson, 21, and Xavier Bradford, 25, died after the 2014 Chevrolet Cruze that Jenkerson was driving collided with a semitrailer truck shortly before 7:30 a.m. on U.S. 50 about 14 miles west of Hutchinson, according to an accident report from the Kansas Highway Patrol.

Bradford was a passenger in the car. Bradford, from California, and Jenkerson, from New Mexico, were both juniors at the college.

The car, according to the Highway Patrol’s report, pulled out from a stop sign at U.S. 50 and Sego Road before being struck on its passenger side by the semi, which was westbound on U.S. 50.

The semi was driven by Edwin Lehmann, 59, of Lehigh. He was not injured, the release said.

Jenkerson was an athletic training major, while Bradford was studying creative writing and editing, according to the college. Bradford was also a defensive back on the Sterling football team.

“To hear of Esther’s and Xavier’s passing is a tragedy,” Sterling College president Scott Rich said in a news release. “Their involvement on campus brought energy and we enjoyed them both at Sterling. We will miss them deeply.

“At this time, we pray for peace for the families and their Sterling College families. They were loved by many students, staff and faculty here.”

The college, which is about 70 miles northwest of Wichita, was scheduled to host a prayer service Monday at 6:30 p.m. at the Gleason Center.

Bryan Horwath: 316-269-6708, @bryan_horwath

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