RALEIGH (WTVD) --Some Wake Forest High School students had to call their parents Wednesday to pick them up early after learning that teacher Michelle Simone Barlow was killed in a multi-vehicle crash.
Barlow, who taught English, died Tuesday.
Students learned about the horrific accident at the start of the school day.
"It was just sad, everybody was depressed," said student Tanner Hardy.
"A lot of teachers were crying throughout the day; they had to tell us the news. A lot of students were out. It was a real quiet day at school," said student Timothy Walker.
The accident happened just before 4:30 p.m. on Capital Boulevard near Burlington Mills Road in Wake County.
Authorities say a Freightliner dump truck that was towing a Bobcat bulldozer rear-ended Barlow's minivan. The 42-year-old's van then rear-ended a tractor-trailer that was in front of her.
Barlow's van was wedged between the two trucks.
A man, who lives nearby, says the crash sounded like an explosion.
"It sounded like dynamite. Two of them, bam, bam, and we walked down here, that's what we found," said Wake Forest resident George Ferrell.
ORIGINAL STORY: Driver dies in deadly crash on Capital Boulevard
Investigators believe Barlow was either stopped or slowing down at the time of the collision.
Charges are pending against the dump-truck driver, 29-year-old Donald Wayne Caulder of Laurinburg.
Barlow leaves behind two children and ABC11 has learned one of her children goes to Wake Forest High.
"My prayers go out to her son and everything, I feel sorry for them," Walker said.
Barlow started working in the Wake County Public School System in January 2015. She was an English teacher at Panther Creek High School from January until June of last year. Then she began teaching at Wake Forest High School in August.
Barlow's husband is a student at nearby Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Dean of Students Dr. Mark Liederbach said in a statement:
"The entire Southeastern community grieves the loss of this amazing wife, mother of two, teacher and friend. But, we do not grieve without hope and rest in the assurance that Michelle is in the loving arms of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We are praying and caring for her family in this difficult time."
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