Odessa Man Dies in Fiery Dale Mabry Crash

The man’s Ford Explorer burst into flames after it struck another vehicle early this morning, Feb. 24.

A 20-year-old Odessa man is dead following an early morning crash today, Feb. 24, on Dale Mabry Highway at Bearss Avenue.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the accident occurred around 5:30 a.m. when a Ford Explorer driven by Michael Gregory Backus of Odessa was traveling northbound on North Dale Mabry Highway and ran a red light. Backus’ Explorer crossed into the path of another vehicle that was trying to make a left-hand turn onto Bearss Avenue under a green traffic signal.

The front left portion of Backus’ Explorer struck the front right portion of the 2003 Ford Expedition driven by Edward Scanlon, 49, of Tampa, a highway patrol media release said.

Backus’ vehicle rotated clockwise, overturned and then struck a pedestrian cross walk sign before bursting into flames, the release said. Scanlon’s vehicle spun counter-clockwise and ended up facing southwest in the center lane of Dale Mabry Highway.

Backus died at the scene, the release said.

Scanlon and his passenger, Michael Patrick Scanlon, 43, of Indian Trail, N.C., suffered serious injuries.

The accident remains under investigation.

Stay with Carrollwood-Northdale Patch for updates as they become available.

Kim March 08, 2013 at 02:04 AM
Shame on all of you who have left nasty comments on this site. My son was a friend of Michael's and he has been silently suffering the loss of his friend. I can't imagine what Michael's family is going through, as our hearts are breaking in our family for his. As my son has been on the corner with the candles, and is preparing for the funeral on Saturday, he is devastated over the loss of a friend. I have prayed for the other 2 victims as I am sure many people have and hope for a full recovery. We have all suffered losses and tragedies in our families and I am sorry for what ever you have gone through (to the negative people) but with all due respect, keep your personal issues to yourself and stop making them a reason to lash out at a grieving family. God Bless.
Greg Crouch March 09, 2013 at 05:24 PM
Everyone needs to back off the Backus family they have been thru a lot of hell these past years! It don't make you a bad person under the influence ! Just a bad decision,don't hate and pray for them in their grief,the lord will heal it all . Greg Crouch
Love Everyone Unconditionally March 09, 2013 at 06:15 PM
Love -everyone- unconditionally forever. Less judging and more love! So sorry for your loss family. Matthew 22:39 Romans 3:23 Matthew 7:1-5 Matthew 5:43-48
Amber Tegelhutter May 13, 2013 at 11:56 PM
I came on here to express my condolences, but apparently you heartless people have other plans. Michael was a great person. He made stupid decisions, as a quick google search will bring up. But thats all you people have seen about him. Yes, other people were hurt. But they are also in their 50's. They survived and had a full recovery. Michael on the other hand was 20.. just turned 20 actually in December. A child you are slandering. One that you don't know anything about other than what the internet has shown you. He had dreams that will never be fulfilled because he called his girlfriend at the wrong time. Thats the truth. He looked down at his phone at the wrong time and ran a red light. There's a message on her phone at 5:02 of just wind when the accident took place. I don't care what happened to you in your life. People go through tough stuff every day, but to be as heartless as you and only care that people were injured and not about the family who lost a child, you are a soulless human being. Brenda, I love you, Aaron and Benjamin. I will continue to pray for you guys everyday. Michael was a great man and will be remembered as such.
Fed Up May 16, 2013 at 03:09 AM
Get your facts staight. Michael did not die from calling his girlfriend and looking at his phone. Michael died because his blood alcohol level was .30 (almost 4 times legal limit) and he was driving 93 mph. and had THC in his system. The other parties in this accident have not fully recovered. They are still not back at work and one recently had to have more surgery.


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