A 76-year-old Watertown man and a 20-year-old Pewaukee woman are dead after a two-vehicle collision that occurred Monday, Jan. 25 on Interstate 94 at 7:08 p.m.
The incident happened close to County Highway O near the Jefferson/Dane County line.
According to the Wisconsin State Patrol, killed in the crash were drivers James Wuestenberg, 76, of Watertown and Marlehna Lehmann, 20, of Pewaukee. A passenger in Lehmann’s vehicle, who has yet to be identified, was injured and was treated at the scene. Wuestenberg was traveling by himself.
The Wisconsin State Patrol is investigating the crash that its troopers said was likely caused by one of the driver’s traveling the wrong way on the highway.
According to troopers, a vehicle traveling west on I-94 in the eastbound lanes collided with another vehicle traveling east on I-94. The wrong way vehicle rolled over into the median and the driver was later pronounced deceased while being transported to the hospital. The State Patrol is conducting a reconstruction of the crash scene and investigation is ongoing.
Assisting agencies included the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, Lake Mills Police Department and Fire Department, Lake Mills EMS and Jefferson County Medical Examiner Nichol Tesch.
For the Wuestenberg family, it was a tragic end to a long day of searching.
According to a Watertown Police Department blotter entry, at 8:43 p.m. Monday, Wuestenberg’s wife, Pat, contacted the department, telling dispatchers that her husband, James, who suffered from dementia, had been gone since 1 p.m. that day. She said he had told her he was going to Brandt-Quirk Park.
“His wife drove up there and couldn’t find him,” the blotter stated.
It went on to say that James Wuestenberg sometimes went to Mud and Rock lakes near Lake Mills.
“Checked with his siblings and they didn’t know where he would be,” the blotter said. “He has a cell phone, but he left it at home.”
Watertown police were informed later that Wuestenberg had been taken to UW Hospital following a car crash and had been pronounced dead.
Tesch said Tuesday that autopsies on Wuestenberg and Lehmann were pending and are scheduled for today.