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Kelford man charged in bicyclist’s death

ROXOBEL – A beloved local man who was a leader in his church died tragically here Thursday afternoon.

William Spencer Lovegrove, 67, of Roxobel, a native of Rich Square, was killed when the bicycle he was riding was struck by a vehicle on NC 308.

According to the accident report filed by North Carolina Highway Patrol Trooper J.V. Reid, Lovegrove was traveling eastbound on NC 308 just inside the town limits of Roxobel around 3:15 p.m. Meanwhile, a 2017 Nissan passenger car, operated by 62-year-old Hugh Battle of Kelford, was also traveling east on NC 308.

Reid said his investigation revealed that Battle pulled out to pass another eastbound vehicle and in the process of re-entering the eastbound lane apparently lost control of his vehicle. That caused his vehicle to veer off the right side of the road where it first struck a roadside sign and then impacted Lovegrove’s bicycle. Battle’s vehicle then crossed the centerline and traveled off the right side of the road before coming to rest when it struck a ditch.

Reid charged Battle with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle.

The Trooper added that an initial report of Battle leaving the scene of the accident was not correct.

“There was some confusion at the accident scene over that, but I can confirm that the driver of the Nissan did not leave the scene,” Reid stated.

Lovegrove, retired from Roanoke Electric Cooperative, served as a deacon, youth leader, and Sunday School teacher at Sandy Run Baptist Church in Roxobel. He was also a member of the Roxobel Volunteer Fire Department.

A widower, Lovegrove is survived by his mother; two adult children, four grandchildren, three sisters, and a host of other family members.

The family will receive friends from 3-5 p.m. today (Saturday) at Garrett-Sykes Funeral Service of Rich Square.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 11 at Sandy Run Baptist Church. Burial will follow in the Roxobel-Kelford Cemetery.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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