The Show on KJZZ

Listen live weekdays at 9 a.m.

3 GCU students killed in wrong-way driver crash on I-17

By Jill Ryan
Associated Press
Published: Tuesday, October 11, 2022 - 9:42am
Updated: Tuesday, October 11, 2022 - 3:03pm

Audio icon Download mp3 (715.5 KB)

Memorial for GCU students killed by wrong-way driver
Grand Canyon University
A memorial on campus for Maggie Ogden, Abriauna Hoffman and Hunter Balberdi, three Grand Canyon University students killed on Oct. 10. 2022, in a collision with a wrong-way driver on I-17 north of Phoenix.

Three Grand Canyon University freshmen were killed after their vehicle was struck by a wrong-way driver on a highway, authorities said Monday.

The Arizona Department of Public Safety told local news outlets they received reports around 4 a.m. Monday about a driver going the wrong way on Interstate 17, roughly 30 miles north of Phoenix.

The wrong-way car was traveling southbound in northbound lanes. It crashed into three vehicles.

One of those vehicles was carrying the students, who were also suitemates. Two of them died at the scene. The third was taken to the hospital where she succumbed to her injuries.

Grand Canyon University identified the three women in a statement as Abriauna Hoffman and Magdalyn (Maggie) Ogden, both 18 and from Clarkston, Washington; and Hunter Balberdi, 19, of Wailuku, Hawaii.

The suspected wrong-way driver was taken to a hospital with undisclosed injuries. Drivers in the two other cars involved did not suffer serious injuries.

University officials said “as the GCU family joins together to mourn the tragic loss of these students, we ask that you keep their families and friends in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.”

Grand Canyon University is a private Christian university based in Phoenix.