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Anoka County crash kills two, Wadena truck driver unhurt

A father driving 100 mph down Interstate 694 on Friday night in Fridley smashed into the back of a semi-truck, killing himself and his pregnant wife and leaving their 1-year-old son an orphan, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.

The child was buckled into a car seat and didn't have any apparent injuries, State Patrol spokesman Lt. Eric Roeske said Saturday.

The boy's mother, Patrice L. Hooks, 31, of Hopkins, was the passenger in the 2007 Chrysler 300 and his father, whose name has not been released by the medical examiner's office, was driving, Roeske said.

KSTP-TV has identified the father as Wilbur Hooks.

Patrice Hooks said in a recent post on her Facebook page that she was expecting a child this fall.

On Wilbur Hooks' Facebook page, his news feed was filled with pictures and posts about his wife and son. His posts painted a picture of a loving, grateful family man with high hopes for the future.

For instance, a March 5 post said this:

"The past few weeks of my life have been thought provoking, soul satisfying, and every part of a God given. ... My thoughts, investments, and sacrifices in the near future may very well be shocking to some of my friends and family. However, the end result may be something you all will be proud of. Praise God."

He spoke about a strong support system and hinted at having a new image and embarking on an entrepreneurial venture.

Family members could not be reached for comment.

While investigators will find out how the accident happened they may never know the why,' Roeske said.

"The two people who would know that information were very tragically killed," he said.

Roeske said that road conditions were not a factor in the crash and that it has not been determined whether alcohol played a role.

The boy was turned over to social services in Anoka County, he said.

The collision occurred in the freeway's eastbound lanes at Matterhorn Drive, just east of Central Avenue, according to the State Patrol.

The lanes were closed for more than 2 1/2 hours while emergency crews worked at the scene.

The driver of the truck, Steven Pothen, 68, of Wadena, Minn., had no apparent injuries.

Raya Zimmerman and Tad Vezner contributed to this report.

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