William Stover had purchased his first all-terrain vehicle two months ago and was riding with his cousin when he collided head-on with a pickup truck. Photo courtesy of Kyra Cavalli

ATV outing turns to tragedy as Central Point man killed

ROGUE RIVER — A 33-year-old father died Friday when his brand new all-terrain vehicle struck a pickup truck head-on as he was turning a corner on West Fork Evans Creek Road in Rogue River.

William Stover, 32, of Central Point, was driving his ATV eastbound with his cousin, Justin Holstein, 28, down West Fork Evans Creek at about 7 p.m. when he collided with a Ford Ranger pickup headed west on the road, said Jackson County Sheriff Mike Winters.

The impact thrust Stover off his ATV into the road. Despite the protection of a helmet, Stover died at the scene in his cousin's arms.

The truck's driver, Kimberly Grissom, 28, of Shady Cove, and a passenger sustained minor injuries.

Stover was a licensed contractor and the father of a 3-year-old boy named Tayven, said his 34-year-old wife, Kyra Cavalli, who works with traumatic brain injury patients at Jackson County Mental Health.

"Tayven misses his daddy and keeps saying he wants to stay up until he gets home," Cavalli said. "He was a wonderful father and husband. I'll miss him more than I can possibly describe."

Stover had purchased the ATV only two months ago.

"He always wanted one," Cavalli said. "I wasn't thrilled; I wanted him to be careful."

Since then, he and Holstein had gone ATV riding every weekend.

"He got one just like mine, but he made his faster," Holstein said.

Friday was the first time the pair had driven West Fork Evans Creek, Holstein said. They had been riding for nearly four hours when the accident occurred.

"We were having fun and he was saying how much he liked the trails," Holstein said.

As they traversed West Fork Evans Creek, Holstein said Stover kept speeding in front of him.

"He was cutting corners, blind corners, and gassing out of them and kept getting ahead of me, and I couldn't catch up with him," Holstein said. "I heard his tires screech, and then, a thud."

Holstein gave Stover CPR but couldn't discern whether he was still alive. Paramedics pronounced him dead at the scene.

"He was a very good person and my best friend," Holstein said.

Winters said it appears Stover crossed into the oncoming lane when he was hit, but an accident reconstruction will be conducted to complete the investigation. The truck's driver was not cited, he said.

Stover was born in Grants Pass and graduated from South Medford High School.

He is also survived by his mother, Carolyn Stover, of Sams Valley, sister Cristy Pickle, of Sams Valley, uncle Les Holstein, of Medford, and cousin Andrew Holstein, of Medford.

Cavalli said the family doesn't blame Grissom, the pickup driver, for the accident.

"We feel very bad she has to go through this," Cavalli said.

The sheriff's office and Oregon State Police continue to investigate the accident.

Reach reporter Paris Achen at 541-776-4459 or

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