IVINS — Santa Clara-Ivins Police Department have released the names of a man who was killed in a hit-and-run accident while riding a hand-crank trike on Old Highway 91 in Ivins on Oct. 21 as well as the suspect who contacted police himself the same night, Santa Clara-Ivins City Police Officer Chad Holt said.
On the evening of Oct. 21, 33-year-old Mesquite resident Gary Fairse was driving westbound on Old Highway 91 near the Kayenta community of Ivins when his car struck and killed 57-year-old Steven Jed Canfield, who was riding a hand-crank trike, Holt said.
Fairse, who was driving a passenger car, left the scene unaware, he said, that the object he hit in the road was actually a person, Holt said. Once he heard reports of the accident he called police and told them he realized he caused the accident.
Fairse will be summoned to appear in 5th District Court on a third-degree felony charge for causing an accident involving death, Holt said.
Canfield was Karisa Vaughn’s roommate and a good friend to her fiancé, she wrote in an email to St. George News. He has had polio and lost the use of his legs at a young age, she said.
“He was training to participate in a marathon and had made it there from Hurricane earlier that day,” Vaughn also wrote, in a comment post to the St. George News Oct. 21 report. “Friends and family worried about him riding his trike on the side of the highway but he was determined to ‘ride.'”
“He always rides in the road, he is disabled from the legs down,” Sierra Bushman wrote in a comment to the St. George News report; she said Canfield was her sibling’s father. “He rode that wheelchair/bike since he was big eenough to ride it. ….”
“Also, his wheelchair had a 5 foot flag on it and was always very well lit up, specifically for drivers,” Bushman posted.
Another commenter posting to the St. George News report under the pseudonym “From Gunlock” said: “I saw this man on the Gunlock road that evening he was riding as far off the road as he could have, he also gave me a nod and a smile , I waved back. I will see his smile for along time to come …”
And another, commenting under the pseudonym “ME” said: “I saw him leaving the gas station when I pulled in around 730 I ran in grabbed smokes and left when I got back on the highway heading back to Santa Clara I passed him he was riding on the dirt giving plenty of room between hm and the road he was just barely passed the gas station when I passed him what a terrible tragedy …”
Emergency responders closed off Old Highway 91 between W. 400 South and Kayenta Parkway in Ivins for several hours the night of the accident to address and investigate the scene where Canfield’s trike and his body were first noticed by passersby who stopped to give aid and divert traffic. Police sought public input with any information that might help them locate the hit-and-run driver.
Anyone wanting to donate to the victim’s family for funeral and other expenses can go to any Mountain America Credit Union and deposit into the account named “Steven Canfield Memorial.”
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