Foresthill Road crash victim was clear of alcohol, illegal drugs

Edward Alvey inexplicably lost control of his car on a winding section
By: Gus Thomson Journal Staff Writer
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AUBURN CA - Foresthill Road crash victim Edward Alvey’s system was clear of alcohol or illegal drugs, just-released toxicology tests show. Lab tests, which take three months or more to be returned, were taken on a sample of Alvey’s blood after the 79-year-old retired millwright and Foresthill resident died in a single-vehicle crash west of Driver’s Flat Road, between Auburn and Foresthill. Dena Erwin, spokeswoman for the Placer County Sheriff’s Office, said that tests showed no sign of alcohol or drugs in Alvey’s blood sample. A coroner’s examination also determined that the cause of Alvey’s death was blunt-force trauma, she said. The California Highway Patrol reported after the Sept. 9 crash that Alvey’s subcompact car was seen by a witness traveling at a high rate of speed as it rounded a sharp turn apparently out of control. After moving back and forth in both lanes of the two-lane roadway, it hit a curb and Alvey – who was not wearing a seatbelt – was pitched out a side window. He died at the scene. Alvey’s niece, Mary Frazier of Atoka, Okla., said at the time that he had a heart condition and was recovering from cancer. Frazier said Tuesday that a relative who had visited Foresthill after his death had learned from a doctor that the effects of a heart attack may have caused Alvey to lose control of the vehicle. But that theory will remain unanswered with the coroner’s determination that the cause of death was due to a blow to the body during the crash, she said. “We still wonder what could have happened,” Frazier said. While the coroner’s office and toxicology tests are completed, the family has one last duty to perform, Frazier said. Alvey was cremated and plans are to travel with the ashes to a Florida cemetery to spread where his mother and father are buried. Reach?Gus Thomson at