Champaign Couple, Piano Teacher Among Victims of I-55 Dust Storm 72-Car Crash


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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – A dust storm on Monday caused a 72-car pileup on I-55, resulting in the death of seven people, including a Champaign couple who were University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign alumni. Michael and Amy Zinchuk were two of the fatalities in the crash.

Amy was a piano teacher who taught around 60 students in Champaign, while Michael was an avid reader and history enthusiast. The Zinchuks met while attending the University of Illinois and married in 1992. They raised their children in Champaign. The couple is survived by their three children and eight siblings. 

A GoFundMe page has been created to cover the funeral and family support expenses for their children. The page, created by Debbie Rodriguez on behalf of Elizabeth Stultz, has raised over $9,000 at the time of writing. It describes Amy as an amazing piano teacher who had a positive impact on many people, and Mike as a loving husband and father who built his life around supporting his family.

Family and friends will gather to celebrate the couple’s lives from 5 to 8 p.m. on Friday at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Gifford, and a service will be held the following day. 


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