Driver arrested in connection with deadly Chicopee crash

One person has been arrested in connection with a deadly crash in Chicopee.
Published: Aug. 1, 2022 at 2:59 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 1, 2022 at 4:25 PM EDT
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CHICOPEE, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - Two people are dead and one person is under arrest following a deadly crash last week in Chicopee.

Jim Leydon, spokesperson for the Hampden District Attorney’s Office, said that 24-year-old Demian Ward of Fort Worth, TX has been arrested on charges including two counts of motor vehicle homicide and reckless operation of a motor vehicle.

On Friday morning, Chicopee Police were called to the area of Montgomery and Grattan Streets for a reported two-vehicle crash.

Demian Ward
Demian Ward(Hampden D.A.'s Office)

“It appears a Chevy Impala was struck by a Dodge Ram on Montgomery Street while attempting to exit a gas station,” Leydon explained.

The driver of the Impala, identified as 55-year-old Rafael Martinez of Springfield, was pronounced dead at the scene. The passenger in the Impala, 75-year-old Luz Martinez of Springfield, died while on the way to an area hospital.

“They were the type of people that would literally, like, take their shirt off their back for you if you needed it and it’s really, really sad to think that such good people go through something so tragic, especially together,” said Keeanna Vazquez.

On Monday, Vazquez remembered her aunt and cousin who passed away. She told Western Mass News they died in that car crash last Friday in Chicopee.

“They had gotten into a tragic accident on Memorial Drive,” Vazquez added.

Vazquez said her family is mourning the deaths of her aunt and cousin and are remembering them for who they were as people.

“The love that they showed everybody, they were very accepting. It didn’t matter who you are, like you, through my titi Lucy’s house and she had food ready for you. She was offering a drink. She was just overall a good time and Lu, he would be helping whoever needed help,” Vazquez said.

Ward was arraigned Monday in Chicopee District Court, where bail was set at $40,000.

The crash remains under investigation.

Editor’s Note: The Hamdpen District Attorney’s Office has provided new information on the identity of the driver of the Impala.