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Park City Day Care Teacher Hit By Car On S.R. 224

KPCW Radio

Janis Byler, a Park City day care teacher, was hit by a car crossing State Route 224 Thursday morning.

Just after 6:30 a.m., a man driving a 2001 Chevrolet Suburban hit Byler as she was crossing S.R. 224, or Park Avenue, in front of Fresh Market. Utah Highway Patrol reports Byler was using the designated crosswalk there. A witness says the pedestrian warning lights were activated at the time she was hit. The driver told UHP he was unable to see her.

After he hit Byler, UHP says the driver used his car to block the lane where she was lying on the road. UHP reports emergency personnel arrived soon after and started CPR. Byler was breathing when an ambulance took her to the University of Utah Hospital. As of Thursday evening, Byler was still in critical condition.

UHP spokesperson Sgt. Nick Street says it’s UHP practice not to release information related to the identity of parties involved in incidents like this. As far as investigators are aware, though, the driver is not a celebrity or someone in town for the Sundance Film Festival. UHP has not arrested the driver, and Street says the driver has been very cooperative with law enforcement.

Sue Pannebaker, director of the Park City School District Child Care Center, confirmed with KPCW that Byler is a teacher at the center.

Family friend Stacy Gerber has set up a GoFundMe account for Byler’s medical costs. Gerber works with Byler’s son and says Byler is like a mother to her.

“She's so giving, and she’ll do anything for anyone," Gerber said. "I know they're not the typical Park City, have a lot of money kind of people. This is going to put her back. She's not going to be able to work. I can't even imagine the medical bills and the rehab she's going to have to go through, assuming that she makes it through. I mean, she's in pretty serious condition right now.”

KPCW will provide ongoing updates to this story.

Emily Means hadn’t intended to be a journalist, but after two years of studying chemistry at the University of Utah, she found her fit in the school’s communication program. Diving headfirst into student media opportunities, Means worked as a host, producer and programming director for K-UTE Radio as well as a news writer and copy editor at The Daily Utah Chronicle.