Concrete chunk kills driver after crashing through windshield

Posted at 3:40 AM, Nov 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-22 22:45:07-05

NASHVILLE, TN (WZTV/CNN) – Police said a man was killed when a chunk of concrete came crashing through his windshield this week.

Investigators are trying to figure out who threw it off a bridge, and why.

The family of 54-year-old Joe Shelton is grieving his loss as Thanksgiving approaches.

Shelton was heading into work at the Nissan plant in Smyrna, TN, on Tuesday morning, traveling on I-24 when a chunk of concrete came flying over the side the Shelby Avenue Bridge, crashing through Shelton’s windshield and hitting him in the face.

“The world is such a bad place right now. People do things without thinking of the consequences,” said Karl Johnson, a neighbor of the Sheltons.

Johnson describes the family as loving and close-knit.

"I saw a lot of cars at the home this afternoon when I left out for a few minutes, and I thought it was family coming in to celebrate the holiday with them, and to find out it’s for something other than that is very sad,” Johnson said Tuesday.

The Shelton family said Joe worked very hard to provide for them, and that he gave them a beautiful life.

What’s so startling to those who knew Shelton, and even to those who didn’t, is the randomness of life – how everything can be taken away in an instant.

“I heard it on the radio this morning,” said Wendy Funk, a neighbor. “I called [my husband], mostly to see if he was OK, because it was about the same time he would have been in the same area. So, it’s very scary.”

Now everyone is hoping Metro Nashville Police find the person responsible.

The Tennessee Department of Transportation examined the concrete chunk and determined it was not from the bridge, but likely from a nearby curb.

There are no leads in the case.

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