A 23-year-old Bellingham woman was killed Monday, Aug. 29, when she crashed head-on into a big rig in rural Costilla County of southern Colorado.
Megan Mischaikov was westbound about 5:50 a.m. Monday on Highway 160 in a 2006 Jeep Liberty when she crossed the center line and hit an eastbound 1996 Peterbuilt truck pulling an empty trailer, said Colorado State Patrol Trooper Josh Lewis.
Mischaikov, who was wearing a seat belt, was pronounced dead at the scene, about one mile east of Fort Garland.
“She traveled into the eastbound lane and struck the left-front of the truck,” Lewis said.
Truck driver Louis Duran, 45, of Antonito, Colo., was taken by ambulance to San Luis Valley Medical Center in Alamosa, Colo., where he was treated for minor injuries and released.
Although the crash remains under investigation, it appears that Mischaikov may have fallen asleep, according to a Colorado State Patrol news release. About 100 gallons of diesel fuel spilled from the truck, and a hazardous materials team responded to the scene.
Mischaikov’s résumé at LinkedIn, a social-networking site for business, said she was head wrangler at Zapata Ranch, a bison and cattle ranch owned by the Nature Conservancy in Mosca, Colo. She managed the staff of wranglers and interns, and monitored the health and use of the historic ranch’s equine stock.
Her father is Ted Mischaikov, CEO of Healthy Pet of Ferndale, formerly called Absorption Corp.
She was a 2011 graduate of Sehome High, where she played soccer, tennis and basketball, and received the President’s Academic Award. The girls’ soccer team won the state championship that year with a 22-1-1 record, and Mischaikov scored three goals on the season.
She also was a 2015 graduate of Washington State University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in communications and was a member of Alpha Gamma Delta sorority, the WSU Equestrian Team, and played club soccer.
She worked various jobs locally while in high school and college, including as a hostess at Bob’s Burgers and Brew, a research assistant at MKOV Inc., an administrative assistant at Dawson Construction, and was a lifeguard and swim instructor at Bayside Swim Club. She volunteered at the Moscow Humane Society in Idaho and at the Whatcom Family YMCA.