Maplewood man dies as truck flies down Picadilly, into River Des Peres

A 55-year-old Maplewood man died Wednesday when his pickup truck went airborne at high speed and crashed into the River Des Peres, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch has reported.

Police identified the man as Mark Soest, of the 7700 block of Jerome Avenue. A witness saw Soest’s Dodge Ram speeding the wrong way down one-way Picadilly Avenue just before 8 a.m. It crossed Ellendale Avenue then flew at least 60 feet over the River Des Peres before hitting a wall on the opposite side of the river, St. Louis Deputy Fire Chief Michael Arras told the Post-Dispatch.

Rescuers pulled the him from the truck and performed CPR before rushing him to a hospital, where he was later pronounced dead. Police are investigating. A St. Louis fire chief said he suspects Soest had a heart attack.

Neighbors, family and friends gathered to mourn his loss, Phyllis Thorpe told 40 South. “A sad day for Maplewood,” she said.

Soest didn’t have insurance. Help his widow, Jan, with funeral expenses.

Update: Thorpe has said that Soest’s stepdaughter wrote to her that they will find a way to keep on taking care of her lawn: “In the face of all they are dealing with! and that she is grateful for the friends that Mark connected her with in his passing.”

Read the full report in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

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