Crossroads pastor, wife die in wreck - Local News - Odessa

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Crossroads pastor, wife die in wreck

Comstock children expected to make full recovery

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The Crossroads Fellowship lead pastor said he has been on a rollercoaster of emotions after an Odessa family was in a devastating car crash in New Mexico that left one of their three children injured and both parents dead.

Jeremiah Ramer, the lead pastor at Crossroads, issued a press release on Friday morning that detailed Crossroads executive pastor Kenny Comstock and his wife, Melissa, died in the two-vehicle collision on Thursday night in New Mexico.

The Comstock’s three children, 6-year-old Natalie, 4-year-old Camden and 1-year-old Carver, all survived the fatal collision. Natalie and Carver reportedly each had scrapes and bruises, while Camden had a head injury and underwent surgery and is expected to make a full recovery.

“I’m heartbroken for their families. I’m heartbroken for (Kenny and Melissa’s) three kids. I’m heartbroken for the Crossroads family. I’m heartbroken for this community,” Ramer said over the phone. “They were the best kind of people. So many people will be really impacted by their loss. Everybody knew them and loved them. It’s a big loss.”

Derrick Bush, a friend of Kenny Comstock’s, said he received a telephone call while he was on his way to the gym at 5 a.m. Friday morning about the fatal collision. Bush said he has been in disbelief since.

“The shock just hasn’t really worn off and really it won’t probably for awhile,” Bush said.

The fatal collision happened around 8 p.m. Thursday on U.S. Route 380 near milepost 220 west of Tatum, N.M., a press release from the New Mexico Department of Public Safety detailed.

Initial investigation reportedly showed that a 2011 Mercedes, driven by a 47-year-old man from Albuquerque, N.M., was traveling east on U.S. Route 380. The Mercedes reportedly crossed the center line and drove into a westbound lane and collided head-on with a 2016 Ford pick-up truck which was occupied by Kenny Comstock (driver), Melissa Comstock (passenger) and their three children.

Kenny Comstock was pronounced dead at the scene, while Melissa Comstock was pronounced dead at an area hospital by the Office of the Medical Investigator, the press release stated. The three Comstock children were transported to area hospitals, while the driver and sole occupant of the Mercedes was also transported to an area hospital.

The news release detailed that alcohol doesn’t appear to have been a factor in the crash and seatbelts were properly utilized by the Comstock family. New Mexico State Police doesn’t release the identities of surviving victims or those who have not yet been charged with a crime. This case is under active investigation by the New Mexico State Police with the assistance of the New Mexico State Police Crash Reconstruction Unit.

Sara Kate Billingsley, who serves as the 446th District Court judge in Ector County, said she met Kenny Comstock on the first day he joined Crossroads.

Billingsley said he was funny, kind and they always talked college football. Billingsley said she received a phone call with the news that Kenny and Melissa had died in the two-vehicle collision.

“He was a good friend,” Billingsley said. “He was a good person. I don’t think many people are lucky enough to have a Kenny in their lifetime. I’m just sad that we didn’t have our Kenny for very long. We didn’t have him long enough.”

Kenny Comstock’s LinkedIn profile details that he was the executive pastor at Crossroads since 2011. He also served as the president of the Compass Academy board of directors.

Bush said that Comstock would speak highly of what Compass Academy could offer children in the Permian Basin.

“He was passionate about education,” Bush said. “We would have several discussions about Compass Academy. He would talk about his long-term vision and goals for Compass. He was always excited to tell me about how Compass compared to other school districts.”

Ramer joined Crossroads three months ago after longtime pastor Rev. Griffin “Grif” Jones retired.

The untimely death of Kenny and Melissa Comstock is going to hurt for awhile, Ramer said.

“It doesn’t matter when these things happen,” Ramer said. “They happen and you are never ready for them. You are never prepared. You look to the lord and trust him and try to find a little bit of hope in what feels like a hopeless situation.”

Reach Royal McGregor at 432-333-7793 or by email at r​mcgregor@oaoa.com and follow him on Twitter at @SirRoyal.