Catherine Gaffaney is a general reporter based in Auckland.

Te Kuiti crash: Father's 'heart-wrenching' drive

Logan Wright (pictured) was killed alongside Amy Katu and Tim Grainger after their Mazda collided with a truck in Te Kuiti on Wednesday. Photo / Facebook
Logan Wright (pictured) was killed alongside Amy Katu and Tim Grainger after their Mazda collided with a truck in Te Kuiti on Wednesday. Photo / Facebook

The journey from Auckland to Otorohanga after his 19-year-old son's tragic death was the "longest, most painful, heart-wrenching" drive of his life, the father of Waikato crash victim, Logan Wright, says.

Logan, Amy Katu, 26, and Tim Grainger, 26, died after their Mazda collided with a truck on Oparure Rd in Te Kuiti, King Country, shortly before 1pm on Wednesday.

READ MORE: 2016 road toll: Sixteen dead so far

The truck was turning right, across the lane, into the driveway of the McDonald's Lime quarry when the car collided with it.

Fire, ambulance and police attended the crash, but all three occupants of the vehicle died at the scene.

Logan's father, Alan Wright, told the Herald the events of that afternoon left him "absolutely shattered".

"I missed a phone call from Logan's older sister. I attempted to call her back but was unable to get through.

"Straight after that I received a phone call from my mother, Logan's grandmother, informing me of what had happened to my son.

(From left to right) Tim Grainger, 26, Logan Wright, 19, and Amy Katu, 26, died after their Mazda collided with a truck on Oparure Rd in Te Kuiti. Photo / Facebook
(From left to right) Tim Grainger, 26, Logan Wright, 19, and Amy Katu, 26, died after their Mazda collided with a truck on Oparure Rd in Te Kuiti. Photo / Facebook

"I couldn't believe it, I was absolutely shattered as I struggled to tell my 8-year-old son and my 11-year-old daughter, Logan's half brother and sister.

"That one phone call changed my whole life, as well as everyone else who knew and loved my son.

"He was taken from us far too soon."

Alan's brother came to his house soon after the devastating call.

"[We were in] utter shock and disbelief as we both tried to come to terms with what had happened ... endless tears and confusion: why did this happen?

"I tried my best to hold it together as we made our way to Otorohanga from Auckland where I live ...

"[It] was the longest, most painful, heart-wrenching drive I have ever experienced in my life as I made my way to be by my son, Logan, as well as my other son and daughter and comfort them in the best way I possibly could."

Alan visited the site where the accident happened on Thursday and met members of Amy's family.

"I needed to see for myself the place my son had his final moments in his life.

"I still can't believe it. Three young lives taken from that very place.

"My heart and condolences go out to Amy and Tim's families and friends."

Alan said he and other members of his family were struggling to come to terms with Logan's death.

"All I can say is Logan was an amazing son. He was so talented; he was loved unconditionally and I am so proud of him.

"We all love Logan so much; he will be dearly missed."

- NZ Herald

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