Truck procession honors memory of fellow driver

PORT ANGELES — A procession of trucks with horns blaring Saturday morning honored the memory of a truck driver who was killed when a cardboard bale fell on him.

Joseph Coolidge Oiness, 47, of Sequim, died Feb. 25 at Olympic Medical Center in Port Angeles after a 1,500-pound bale in a semi-trailer fell on him when he opened the trailer doors at a McKinley Paper Company unloading area on Ediz Hook.

The Old Blyn Highway resident had worked as a driver at Hermann Brothers Logging & Construction Inc. of Port Angeles for about 10 years.

Co-owner Bill Hermann said about 25 company truck drivers and about a half-dozen more of Oiness’s friends drove from the company’s Eclipse Industrial Parkway site to Ediz Hook and back to honor his memory before noon Saturday.

“That’s one of the honors they wanted to show,” Hermann said Saturday. “They’re going to have a little celebration of life for him [Saturday], and that’s how they wanted to kick it off.”

State Labor and Industries officials are conducting an investigation as it does for all workplace fatalities, Dina Lorraine of Labor & Industries said shortly after Oiness’ death.

“Some time during the transport the load shifted,” she said in an email then.

A family member said Oiness had eight children.

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