Father of 23-year-old N.J. man killed in Thanksgiving crash: 'I don't know what to do now'

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Joel Hutton, 23, of Berlin, died after the Chevrolet Malibu he was driving crossed the center line on Williamstown Road in Winslow, crashed into an oncoming Honda Civic, and overturned. The accident occurred around 7:25 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day.

Gregg Hutton paced around his son's upstairs bedroom at least a dozen times Wednesday, as if Joel was about to pull up outside in his aqua Chevrolet Malibu.

The father had thought about the future his son would miss. Less than a week earlier, on Thanksgiving, a head-on collision had killed Joel Hutton, 23, and a friend.

"I want to see him married," Gregg Hutton, 52, said Wednesday evening. "I want to see him have a child. I want to see him change his first diaper."

Now, he was preparing for a funeral.

"My day usually starts talking to this guy," he said. "I don't know what to do now."

Authorities are still investigating what caused Joel Hutton's car to cross the center line on Williamstown Road in Winslow around 7:25 a.m. Thursday.

The Malibu crashed into an oncoming Honda Civic and overturned. Janiya Conquest, 19, of Winslow, whom Hutton was driving home, was thrown onto a field next to the road, police said.

Both she and Hutton were pronounced dead at the scene. The Civic's driver, Jillian Farrell, 19, of Williamstown, was released from Cooper University Hospital last weekend.

Gregg Hutton said Wednesday it was "unbelievable" that his son, an only child, was gone. He and his wife, Shelli, grew up in Berlin Borough and raised Joel there.

Shelli was diagnosed with dementia in 2010. As her condition worsened, Joel bathed, fed, and dressed her, Gregg said.

"He did a hell of a job with his mother," who began living in a full-time facility in July, Gregg said. "No child should have to do that, and he did it."

He said he was humbled by the outpouring of support from Joel's friends since the accident. He said he was praying for Conquest's family, too.

"Her life was just as important as my son," he said.

A viewing for Joel Hutton viewing will begin at 9 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 1, at Christ Care Unit Missionary Baptist Church, 242 Sicklerville Rd., Sicklerville. A funeral service will follow at 11 a.m.

mboren@phillynews.com 856-779-3829 @borenmc

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