Loved ones are mourning a New Jersey couple who died in a chain reaction crash on I-78 while on the way to their wedding.
Kathryn Schurtz, 35, and her fiancé, Joseph Kearney, were driving on I-78 westbound in Windsor Township, Berks County, on Wednesday around 2:30 p.m. when the accident occurred.
Traffic was heavy at the time in both westbound lanes due to an earlier crash at mile marker 32.5. A tractor-trailer traveling westbound was unable to stop for the traffic ahead. It struck the couple’s vehicle, which was then pushed into the back of another tractor-trailer and set off a chain reaction crash that included three more tractor-trailers.
The couple’s vehicle and two of the tractor-trailers caught fire. Schurtz and Kearney were both killed in the crash while three other people were hurt.
Schurtz and Kearney were on their way to their wedding in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, at the time of the accident.
Schurtz was born in Elizabeth, New Jersey, and grew up in Fanwood, New Jersey. She graduated from Union Catholic High School in Scotch Plains, New Jersey. She then attended George Washington University, where she received her liberal arts degree before earning her MBA from Notre Dame University.
Schurtz worked as the Head of Platform Partnerships for Oracle Data Cloud in New York City and was residing in Jersey City, New Jersey, at the time of her death. Her mother also served as a councilwoman in Fanwood.
Loved ones say they’ll remember Schurtz for her “voracious appetite of reading, love of cooking, and trailblazing new adventures” with her fiancé Joseph Kearney.
A visitation will be held at Immaculate Heart of Mary R.C. Church, 1571 Martine Avenue in Scotch Plains, New Jersey, on Monday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and on Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. followed by a mass at 11 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations should be made to the Kathryn M. Schurtz Scholarship Fund at Union Catholic High School in Scotch Plains, New Jersey.