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Driver sought in 1 of 2 Panhandle crashes

Driver sought in 1 of 2 Panhandle crashes

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Two fatal traffic crashes Tuesday in Nebraska's Panhandle are under investigation, one of them involving a driver who fled.

The Cheyenne County Sheriff's Office said Michael J. Kennedy, 44, of Sidney was killed when his vehicle, northbound on County Road 125 about 2 miles east of Sidney, was struck by a westbound Union Pacific Railroad train at about 6:30 p.m. MDT.

At about 9:15 a.m., another Sidney man, Martin Geiger Jr., 45, died in a two-vehicle crash on Highway 385 about 15 miles north of Sidney, the Sheriff's Office said.

Geiger was attempting to pass another northbound vehicle when the two made contact, the Sheriff's Office said, sending Geiger's vehicle into the east ditch, where it rolled twice. Geiger and passenger Kathy Berger, 53, of Bayard were ejected. Neither was wearing a seat belt, authorities said. Berger, critically injured, was taken to Sidney Regional Medical Center, then flown to Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff.

The other vehicle, described as a 1980s two-or four-door white hatchback with a 3-to 4-inch black stripe near its underside, drove off, the Sheriff's Office said. It was driven by a man, authorities said.

The Sheriff's Office is asking for the public's help in finding the vehicle. Anyone with information is urged to call 308-254-2922.

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