Several people conveyed experiences of loss and lives interrupted during a Tuesday sentencing hearing for Paul W. Hively III for his role in a fatal crash in 2007.
Family and friends of Trent Grove, Shelby Winemiller and Kyle Maudlin spoke one after another during the hearing before Common Pleas Judge Gregory M. Snyder.
In the end, Snyder sentenced Hively, 27, of North Codorus Township, to seven to 14 years in state prison.
Hively pleaded no contest last month to two counts of homicide by vehicle while DUI, one count of aggravated assault by vehicle while DUI and two counts of DUI in a crash that caused the deaths of Grove and Winemiller and injuries to Maudlin, all of whom were riding in the car Hively was driving.
Those who spoke said they had waited more than two years to hear an apology from Hively.
County prosecutors contend Hively was driving drunk at 1:30 a.m. Dec. 31, 2007, in the 1900 block of Seven Valleys Road when the Pontiac GTO he was driving veered off the road and into a tree.
Hively walked away from the accident with minor injuries and a blood alcohol level of 0.157 percent, which is higher than Pennsylvania's legal limit of 0.08 percent.
Airforce Airman 1st Class Grove, 21, of West Manchester Township, remained belted in the passenger side seat of the vehicle he owned.
Winemiller, 21, of North Codorus Township, and Maudlin, of York, were thrown from the vehicle.
In coma for weeks: Maudlin, then 21, remained in a coma for weeks while his family remained by his side. When Maudlin came to, he learned his father had died two weeks after the accident.
His mother, Karen Maudlin, spoke quietly and tearfully about all the family has endured since the accident.
Her husband, Jim Maudlin, left their son's side one time in the two weeks following the crash. He went home that day to rest, lay down and died.
When Kyle Maudlin regained consciousness, he asked for his father but learned of his passing and subsequent burial, according to statements Tuesday's hearing.
Karen Maudlin says her son struggles daily with that loss as well as the death of his friends. He has numerous surgeries behind him and more ahead. She says there are days he questions his survival and contemplates death.
Others spoke too: The other men's families spoke, too, each reliving the pain of the night and the days the followed.
Some spoke with anger at Hively, called him a coward who avoided responsibility with a plea that is neither an admission of guilt nor of denial in DUI cases.
Hively apologized after all had spoken. His spoke tearfully as he recalled the friends he'd grown up with and holidays they'd spent together year after year.
"I take full responsibility for what I did that night," Hively said. There are many times during the night that I wish and pray that I would have been the one who didn't make it."
Judge Snyder reasoned prior to sentencing Tuesday that the crash was tragic and nothing he could say would alter events. Too often, he said, young men party, presume they're invincible and make bad decisions that ruin lives.
That December night, Hively was the designated driver and had consumed alcohol alongside his buddies. Snyder said all opted to pile into the car despite a night of partying.
Hively was remanded to York County Prison and will be transferred to a state prison, where he will serve two sentences of three to six years for the homicide while DUI charges as well as one to two years for aggravated assault while DUI.
The sentences will be served consecutively.
Hively also will complete alcohol-related classes and counseling and pay restitution of about $45,000, court costs and fines.
-- Reach Kathy Stevens at 505-5437 or ksteven firstname.lastname@example.org.