Melvin Benedict (Ben) Ault, 19, of East Petersburg, and a sophomore student at Millersville University, majoring in Physics, tragically passed away before 6 a.m. on Dec. 1 after he was involved in a freak vehicular accident involving a pack of mules.
According to WFMZ.com, Ault was traveling south on Route 272 to meet up with his family and hunt with his father when two mules ran across the road. Ault’s car hit the animals, which turned onto the roof, and were thrown into the oncoming, northbound lane. Officer Jesse Blank of the Southern Regional Police Department said in the article by 69 News that Ault’s vehicle “was sideswiped by a second vehicle and short time later struck a third time.”
Both mules were killed in the accident – one was killed instantly while another sustained severe injuries, it had to be euthanized.
The mules were in a pack of four, although two others ran off before police arrived on the scene. They had escaped from a pasture about two miles away from the site. The owner of the farm had told police his mules were secured behind a fence the night before, but when he had awoken, they were no longer there, and the barrier had been torn down.
The Lancaster County coroner determined Ault died of multiple traumatic injuries, and his death was ruled accidental. The two other drivers sustained injuries that were not life-threatening.
Dr. Aminta Breaux, vice president for student affairs, addressed the entire campus of the tragedy through the Millersville e-mail system.
There is still no information on funeral or memorial services, though another notification through the e-mail services may alert the campus on updates.
Students impacted by the sudden loss of Ault should seek counseling services at the Counseling and Human Development Center on the third floor of Lyle Hall. More information is available at their link through the Millersville website at http://www.millersville.edu/counsel/.