Pender EMS, Topsail artist give Eddings family gift honoring sons killed in crash

PENDER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Pender County EMS and a local artist partnered up to give a special gift to a family who touched many hearts in the community after a horrific accident killed both of their sons.

“Not one day goes by I don’t think about that call,” Pender EMS Battalion Chief Ryan Johnston said.

The call he is referring to was a deadly crash that happened on Memorial Day weekend in 2015 in Hampstead at the intersection of Highway 17 and Sloop Point Loop Road. Gentry Eddings II and Hadley Eddings were heading home from a wedding on Topsail Island when their vehicles were hit from behind at a stop light.

Their son Dobbs, 2, and newborn baby Reed, who had to be delivered by emergency c-section, both died.

This past weekend, Johnston and Lieutenant Shelton James presented the couple with a canvas by artist, Jeff Wenzel. Wenzel is known well in the Topsail community for his drone photography. 

The image given to Hadley and Gentry captures the school built in Haiti last year funded by donations in honor of the Eddings family. The school is named “Dobbs and Reed Eddings Primary School” and sits high on a hill in Minoterie, Haiti.

Wenzel took the photo in Haiti last September while on a medical missions trip.

“This tragic story affected me deeply,” Wenzel said. “I am close friends with Ryan Johnston. I know how deeply it affected him and still affects him.”

In January, Gentry and Hadley announced that they are pregnant and are expecting twins.

Categories: Community, Local, Pender

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