Troopers Identify Victim After Car Found In Catawba County Creek

HICKORY, N.C. — A man who died after his vehicle overturned in a creek has been identified. The North Carolina Highway Patrol says on Saturday at 9:45 a.m. they responded to a vehicle in a creek on 24th Street Place Northeast. When they arrived they found a 2020 Jeep Gladiator upside down and partially submerged. The Jeep was in an area where the road had previously washed out.

The driver of the Jeep has been identified as 47-year-old Philip John Paxson of Hickory. He was found deceased in the vehicle. Troopers say they believe the car went off the road shortly after 11 p.m. on Friday.

State troopers say 24th Street Place Northeast is not a road maintained by the North Carolina Department of Transportation. The roadway reportedly collapsed several years ago when a culvert washed away. Troopers say previous barricades had been vandalized and removed.

To support the family of Philip Paxson, a GoFundMe can be found here.