Woman identified in fatal minivan-tractor crash near Salem

Image: MGN

SALEM, S.D. (KSFY) - Authorities have identified a Salem woman who died as a result of injuries suffered in a minivan-tractor crash that happened last week west of Salem.

According to the Department of Public Safety, a 1998 John Deere 7810 tractor was westbound on South Dakota Highway 38 on Jan. 16 around 5:50 p.m. when it was struck from behind by a 2013 Chrysler Town and Country minivan.

The tractor had on its flashing rear amber lights, the DPS said. The collision resulted in the tractor overturning onto its passenger’s side and the other vehicle coming to rest in the center of both lanes of Highway 38.

Helene Eichacker, 85, was the passenger in the minivan. She was airlifted to Avera McKennan Hospital in Sioux Falls. She died on Jan. 17.

Another Salem woman, 72-year-old Marlys Elliott, was the driver. She suffered serious non-life threatening injuries and was transported to Sanford Hospital in Sioux Falls.

Colin Brown, 28, of Spencer was the tractor driver. He was not injured.

All three people involved were wearing seatbelts, the DPS said.

The South Dakota Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash.