Jonathan Michael Cleary

A Pike County resident died after being hit by a vehicle while walking along U.S. 23 in the Allen area Saturday night.

Jonathan Michael Cleary, 32, of Pikeville, died Dec. 14 at ARH Our Lady of the Way in Martin after he was hit by a vehicle on the highway, officials said.

Kentucky State Police Trooper William Petry reports that the incident happened at around midnight on Saturday, Dec., 14, and Cleary was pronounced dead by Floyd County Deputy Coroner Omery Hall at the hospital at about 1 a.m. 

He said the preliminary investigation shows that Cleary may have been attempting to cross U.S. 23 near the road’s intersection of Ky. 1428 at Allen when he was hit by a Toyota Tundra driven by a juvenile, whose name was not released. The teenager was driving northbound on U.S. 23 toward Prestonsburg when he hit Cleary, Petry said, and the incident occurred near the turn lane at the U.S. 23-Ky. 1428 intersection. 

“Apparently, from the way I’m reading this, he may have been attempting to cross the road,” Petry said. “He was walking to the pass, so I’m assuming he was going to cross or do something.” 

KSP Trooper Shane Jacobs is continuing the investigation. At this time, Petry said no charges are expected to be filed. 

“Not at this point. It appears to be an accident,” Petry said about whether charges would be filed. “Of course, anything could change, but we don’t look for them to right now.” 

He said officials do not suspect that alcohol or drugs played a role in the crash, but toxicology reports are still pending on the driver and Cleary.

The highway was closed a couple of hours as emergency medical personnel worked at the scene. The KSP was assisted by the Allen Volunteer Fire Department and Lifeguard Ambulance Service, Petry said.

Cleary is the second person who died recently while walking along U.S. 23 this year. In October, Jerry Hackworth, 67, of Beaver, will killed by being struck by a vehicle while walking near the highway in the Stanville area. Petry said that investigation is still open, and no charges have been filed in the case. 

In 2017, two people were also killed while trying to cross U.S. 23 at Ivel. Berry Allen Reynolds, 51, of Beaver, was crossing the highway when he was struck by a vehicle on Oct. 12, 2017, and Nicholaus F. Adkins, 38, of Ivel, was also crossing the four-lane when he was hit and killed by a vehicle on Aug. 24, 2017.

Cleary leaves behind his mother, Cindy Price Keene Dotson of Aflex, fiancee Bridget Preece of Pikeville, children Trevor Mullins and Jonnica Cleary, both of Red Jacket, W.Va., Adam Stanley and Homer Tackett, both of Belfry, and three stepchildren, Kaden Anderson, Lucian Anderson and Kash Preece, all of Pikeville, as well as several other family members and friends.

Funeral services will be held Wednesday at the Leckieville Freewill Baptist Church. He will be buried at the McCoy Cemetery in Burnwell. 

Petry encourages the public to be careful when they are walking along roadways, especially at night.

“Anytime after dark, if you’re going to be on or around the road, or just walking beside of the road, you’ve got to be extremely careful because people now, with distractions will run off the road and you just need to watch traffic and try to stay away from it as much as possible,” Petry said. He said distracted driving does not appear to be a factor in Cleary’s death.

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