Single vehicle crash claims life of Ocracoke man

Published 1:36 pm Thursday, February 15, 2024

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On Ocracoke Island, at 10:58 a.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024, William Howard Frantz from Ocracoke’s Sunset Drive, was driving to catch the 11 a.m. ferry to Hatteras.

Earlier in the day, Emergency Medical Services personnel had visited the Frantz home, however transportation was refused at that time. It was reported that Frantz and his spouse Janet were believed to be on their way to a medical facility at the time of the crash.

Frantz, 61, hit an overwashed area of NC 12 at the north end of Ocracoke Island. His vehicle, a 2022 Chevrolet Suburban, went airborne and landed on sandbags, reports a witness also on her way to the ferry.

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A bystander, Ocracoke paramedic Thurston Sumner, was able to get Janet Frantz from the vehicle.

Hyde County Emergency Medical Services arrived along with the Ocracoke Volunteer Fire Department. CPR was administered to Frantz in the vehicle by multiple responders. Extrication tools were used, also by multiple responders, to retrieve Frantz from the vehicle.

Despite rescue efforts, Frantz was declared deceased at the scene after EMS consulted with the medical examiner, reports Hyde County Capt. Joe Smith, who investigated the incident. Assisting in the investigation was National Park Service Law Enforcement Ranger Corey Cutwright.

Janet Frantz stayed on the scene to the end. A family member escorted her home.

EMS personnel took charge of the body and were to deliver it to the medical examiner.