San Juan Island's Sam Buck, Sr. suffers minor injuries Monday in early morning car crash

At roughly 8:50 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 15, Sam Buck Sr. hit the gas instead of the breaks and collided into Griffin Bay Bookstore. - Contributed Photo/ Russell Sadler
At roughly 8:50 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 15, Sam Buck Sr. hit the gas instead of the breaks and collided into Griffin Bay Bookstore.
— image credit: Contributed Photo/ Russell Sadler

Long-time islander Sam Buck Sr. was taken to the medical center early Monday morning after suffering minor injuries in a single-vehicle crash.

Buck, 84, drove his pickup truck into the doorway of the Griffin Bay Bookstore shortly before 9 a.m. The pickup lurched from a parking space just outside the bookstore, across the sidewalk and into the store's front door.

“It was  a classic step on the gas instead of the brake scenario,” Sheriff Rob Nou said. “This isn’t uncommon.”

Nou added that no other injuries were sustained in the crash.

Wes Corey, an employee of King's Market, heard the crash while at work and rushed to the scene, where he pulled Buck from his vehicle.

“He looked okay and seemed to feel bad about the crash,” Corey said.

Other bystanders heard the crash from several blocks away. Inside the bookstore, an employee was straightening the card racks just feet from the entrance when she saw Buck's pickup headed towards her. She was able to move out of the way before the pickup collided with the front door.

“It was the best spot he could have hit,” said the woman, who asked not to be identified. “He didn’t ruin any of the merchandise.”

After the crash, the owner of the bookstore, Laura Norris, began sweeping up broken glass. Several customers who had ordered coffee in the wake of the crash were served before the store closed temporarily.

“We’re not going to be open for a while,” Norris said.

After roughly an hour and a half of cleaning up debris, Norris reopened the bookstore.

"We hope he's doing well," she said.  "We know Sam feels bad about the crash."


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