Memorial for Rick Rike
Berkner High Class of 1991

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Rick Rike
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A Canton teacher and his two children were killed in a two-vehicle, head-on collision late Friday afternoon on State Highway 198, 9.8 miles south of Canton.

Department of Public Safety Trooper Clint Pirtle is still investigating the accident that took the life of Wallace Richard Rike, 33, Mabank, his 6-year-old daughter Macy Marie, 2 ½-week-old son Caleb Daniel, and Justin M. Reller, 28, Kemp. Pirtle said speed was a factor.

“Justin Reller was recorded as an aggressive high speed driver,” Pirtle said; adding that earlier there were reports from the Canton Police Department and the Van Zandt County Sheriff’s Department of a high speed driver.

Pirtle said he spoke to a man who called the accident in at the scene.

“Reller had tailgated him and his family and disappeared out of sight,” Pirtle said; adding that the witness thought Reller was driving in excess of 100 miles per hour.

“Then he saw a fireball in the distance and heavy black smoke,” Pirtle added.

Speed caused Reller who was driving a 2005 red Chevrolet Monte Carlo, to drift across the center stripe into the lane of traffic where Rike, who was driving a 2005 white Nissan Quest van, was traveling.

According to Pirtle’s report Reller was “southbound on State Highway 198 traveling at a high speed, Rike was northbound. Reller crossed into the northbound lane as he was going into a right curve. Reller struck Rike head on.”

The report went on to say that “both vehicles burned. Both drivers and passengers were killed. Accident was due to Reller being on wrong side of road not passing and failed to control speed.”

“He (Reller) came into the curve at a high rate of speed, drifted across the center stripe and hit the Rike’s van head on,” Pirtle said. “…They both stopped right there.”

Rick Rike, 33, Mabank, was born March 7, 1973, in Dallas to Wallace Richard Sr. and Vicki Lynn Shaffer Rike, and died Oct. 13, 2006, in Phalba.

He graduated from Berkner High School in 1991 and the University of North Texas in 1996.

He was known by several different names over the years, depending on when you knew him. You may have known him as Rick Rike, L.R. (Little Rick), Rý, Rick Wrong and Rick Right.

He taught at Aubry High School from 1996 to 2003, and was currently a speech teacher, debate teacher and UIL coordinator at Canton High School.

Rick and Abby were married July 19, 2003.

He was a member of the legislative committee of the Texas Speech Communications Association and was a member of the National Forensics League.

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