Police: Falling tree kills Walla Walla man in Idaho

Gary Bierwagen died when a tree hit his truck, Idaho State Police said.

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COOLIN, Idaho — A Walla Walla man was killed Friday and a woman was seriously hurt when a tree toppled onto their pickup during a windstorm near Priest Lake, Idaho, State Police reported.

Gary Bierwagen, 66, was driving his 2007 Toyota Tundra on a private driveway on Pinto Point Road along Indian Creek Bay when the tree hit the roof of his vehicle.

According to a report in the Bonner County Daily Bee, the woman was flown to an undisclosed hospital. Three others in the vehicle — reportedly children — were transported to undisclosed hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries. The Daily Bee said there were indications occupants of the vehicle were a family, but it was not immediately confirmed. Authorities said a severe thunderstorm swept through that region Friday afternoon and caused numerous trees to topple. The vehicle’s occupants had to be extricated, Bonner County EMS spokesman Bob Abbott told the Daily Bee. "Access was exceedingly difficult for rescuers," he said.

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