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Forest Grove man dies in crash


Accident on Northwest Zion Church Road claims life of Paul Suryan

by: COURTESY PHOTO: WASHINGTON COUNTY SHERIFFS OFFICE - Paul David Suryan of Forest Grove died March 18 when he lost control of this Toyota Camry on Northwest Zion Church Road and collided with a Peterbilt semi-truck.Forest Grove resident Paul David Suryan, 34, died Tuesday, March 18, in a crash on Northwest Zion Church Road, just west of its intersection with Northwest Gordon Road.

According to the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Suryan was speeding west in his 1997 Toyota Camry around 11 a.m. when he lost control on a curve and crossed into the oncoming lane, colliding with a Peterbilt semi tractor-trailer truck.

Len Grover of Cornelius was heading east at the same time, just in front of the truck, and saw Suryan come around the curve at “a tremendous rate of speed — he had to be doing at least 90 miles per hour.

“He came in my lane and was coming right at me,” but jerked back into the other lane at the last moment and went off the shoulder, said Grover. “The whole thing took probably three seconds. I was probably a second and a half from being killed myself.”

The crash continued after Grover passed. He assumes Suryan overcorrected after leaving the shoulder because he was back on the roadway a second later when “I looked in my rearview mirror and saw him sliding sideways into the truck.”

Suryan died at the scene. The truck driver was not injured. Zion Church Road was closed until about 3 p.m. while the Washington County Crash Analysis Reconstruction Team gathered evidence and diagrammed the crash.