A tragic incident occurred on Friday, January 5, as Jim Hogg Paul, a 78-year-old resident of Glenville, lost his life in a head-on collision on N.C. 107, merely 1.6 miles from his home. Aubrey Eugene Holley III, a 21-year-old man from Sylva, is now facing misdemeanor death by vehicle charges in connection with the accident.
The collision took place near the Midgard Self Storage facility in Glenville, where Paul’s 1929 Ford, bearing the license plate ROARN29, was struck head-on by a 2016 Chevrolet van driven by Holley. The tragic incident was reported to the N.C. Highway Patrol at 4:36 p.m., with Trooper Emily Sanders providing details.
Holley, employed by Highlander Heating & Air, was driving northbound on N.C. 107 in a van owned by his employer. The road section had three lanes – a truck lane and a passing lane for southbound traffic, with one lane designated for northbound traffic. A double yellow line prohibited passing for northbound cars.
Sanders explained that Paul was traveling south on N.C. 107 when Holley, attempting to pass another northbound vehicle (not involved in the incident), collided head-on with Paul’s vehicle. Both vehicles sustained severe right-side damage, leaving gouge marks on the road—a result of the metal frames digging into the asphalt during the collision.
The impact caused Holley’s van to veer off the roadway to the left, striking a guardrail before coming to a stop against it, facing southwest. Paul’s vehicle remained in the road, also facing southwest.
Despite the efforts of emergency responders from Glenville-Cashiers EMS and the Cashiers-Glenville Fire Department, Paul succumbed to his injuries at the scene. Holley, with a fractured pelvis, was transported to Harris Regional Hospital by Glenville-Cashiers EMS. The investigation, led by the accident reconstruction team, is ongoing, and the estimated speeds of the vehicles prior to the collision remain unknown. Holley faces charges of misdemeanor death by vehicle and reckless driving. Traffic disruptions persisted for nearly three hours as a result of the incident.