N.C. Highway Patrol: Teacher killed by drunk driver

ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (WAVY) — A Pasquotank County family said their last goodbye to a loved one Tuesday evening.

North Carolina Highway Patrol reports 30-year-old Elbert Horton was driving drunk in a 2006 Chrysler minivan on Body Road when he killed 62-year-old Ellen Holmes Russell in a head-on collision last Friday.

Horton had four kids in the car at the time, but none were hurt.

Law enforcement said Horton’s car went right and came to rest of the east shoulder of the road. Russell’s pickup truck went right and rolled over before coming to rest upside down. Police pronounced her dead at the scene.

“It was just so devastating to see something like that could happen to somebody you see smiling everyday,” neighbor Chris Blake Sr. said. “She would still be here, if that didn’t happen.”

Highway patrol said Horton is facing DUI charges, and more charges are expected soon.

The family held Russell’s funeral at 3 p.m. Tuesday. Russell spent more than 30 years in the classroom with Pasquotank County and Gates County schools before retiring in 2005.

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