An early morning crash in Philadelphia today involving a man from Bear, Delaware has left 3 people dead, including two from one of Philadelphia’s famed Mummers bands.
The two men from South Philadelphia String Band, 36-year-old Joseph Ferry, and 31-year-old victim Dennis Palandro, both from Pennsylvania, had performed just hours earlier in Philadelphia’s New Year’s Eve parade, helping the band earn a second place finish in the annual event.
They were riding in a 2015 Acura SUV with two other women: 35-year-old Kelly Wiseley, of PA, who was also killed in the accident, and Panandro’s wife, who was taken to Jefferson University Hospital. Philadelphia news outlets are reporting that Ferry and Wisely became engaged over Christmas.
Philadelphia Police have confirmed that the driver who caused the accident — 29-year-old Keith Campbell from Bear, DE — had 15-20 stab wounds to his chest and abdomen while driving a 2014 Audi White in color. He was transported to Jefferson University Hospital and as of late this afternoon, he is listed in critical condition.
Police Capt. Mark Overwise of the Philadelphia Accident Investigations Department says Campbell appears to have crossed a median and a left-turn lane in the 600 block of Packer Avenue around 1:40 am. “Why he did that, we don’t know,” said Overwise today at a news conference. “I mean, you could suspect that he passed out as a result of the wounds he had — we don’t know.” Campbell was found with multiple stab wounds when he was pulled from his vehicle.
Overwise added that he wasn’t certain when Campbell was stabbed but that police did recover a knife on the floor of his vehicle. He went on to say that there was no one else in his vehicle. Philadelphia Police say charges are pending.
Mummers bands are some of the most popular participants in Wilmington’s Christmas and St. Patrick’s Day Parades. Just this past November, the Woodland String Band (Philadelphia Mummers) and the Duffy String Band of Philadelphia performed to the delight of Christmas parade watchers on Market Street.
Several Mummers bands strut in the Philadelphia’s New Year’s Eve parade, and top performances are awarded each year. The South Philly String Band has won numerous awards for their performances since 1959. Hundreds expressed their condolences to the families and members of the band on their Facebook page today.