Woman Dies After Tuesday’s I-65 Head-On Accident

It was supposed to be a fun trip to a 50th class reunion in Bowl…..NorthCrest obstetricsFullSizeRender

Smokey Barn News
Sunday September 28, 2014
Portland, Robertson County Tenn.

 Woman Dies After Tuesday’s I-65 Head-On Accident

Joy Dumas Barnes
Joy Dumas Barnes

oy Dumas Barnes, 68, along with her friend Catherine Baylis, 72, were traveling on I65 North Tuesday evening in Robertson County. They were on their way to Kentucky after landing at the Nashville Airport. The two friends had passed through Cross Plains and were just entering Portland on I65 with Nashville Behind them, it was about 10:50PM. It was supposed to be a fun trip to a 50th class reunion in Bowling Green Kentucky, instead an accident would change their lives forever.

As you drive along the Interstate you halfway expect to see a Deer, a  Raccoon, and, now that they have migrated into the area, even an Armadillo. What they saw were the headlights of another vehicle coming straight at them, there was little they could do but brace for impact. After the two vehicles collided, the drivers of both cars were trapped inside their vehicles and everyone had sustained serious injuries.

Photo shows one of the Lifeflight Helicopters  (center)

According to Public Information Officer Sergeant Bill Miller with the Tennessee Highway PatrolDanny Polak, 39, of Bowling Green KY, driving a Saturn, somehow ended up in the left lane of I65 North heading South, he was heading the wrong way. Polak’s vehicle impacted the Toyota Camry containing Barnes and her friend Catherine, head on at the 116 mile marker, police say.

After the accident two LifeFlight helicopters landed in the middle of the Interstate and all three were transported to Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville.   Barnes, a member of the Bowling Green High School class of 1964, died Thursday, two days after the now fatal wreck.

According to a THP report obtained by Smokey Barn News,  blood toxicology tests have been requested for Danny Polak, the driver of the Saturn, and charges are pending. The report also indicated that Polak was wearing his safety belt. 

As of 9:00PM Saturday evening, Catherine Baylis was listed in stable condition.  Danny Polak is listed in critical condition, both are still being treated at Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville. The report indicated that Baylis (driving the Toyota Camry) was wearing her safety belt but the report did not indicate if Barnes (also in the Camry) was wearing hers.

For more details  and  a heartwarming report about Joy Dumas Barnes by the Bowling Green Daily News in Bowling Green, KY (CLICK HERE)

Timeline of events: 

10:50PM  Wreck is called into 911.

11:08PM Crews  prepar to land LifeFlight helicopters.

11:23PM   LifeFlight helicopter ONE is On The Ground.

11:41PM  LifeFlight helicopter TWO lands.

11:57PM Both LifeFlight helicopter’s have left the scene.

12:10PM  Officials say both lanes likely to remain closed until about 1:ooAM

12:51PM Freeway is opened back up by the THP.

Smokey would like to convey our deepest sympathy to anyone touched by this tragedy.


Head-On Accident I-65 North 2 LifeFlight’s Called

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Comments (2)

  1. Kelsey Fry October 1, 2014
  2. Judy W. September 30, 2014