A Missouri Air National Guard member died in a highway median Saturday after what police suspect was a road-rage incident that took a deadly turn, reports KMBC. ABC News reports Cody Harter, variously identified as 23 and 24, was headed home to St. Joseph around 7:30pm when witnesses say he and another vehicle pulled over to a median where I-470 and MO-291 merged. Lee's Summit police say those witnesses believe the two drivers had an issue at that merging point, stopped their vehicles, and got out to exchange words; Harter was then stabbed in the chest, allegedly by that motorist, who then continued on I-470. Mom Kerrie Harter says her son "had been to war and back," serving tours in Iraq and Qatar as well as time spent in Houston and Puerto Rico after hurricanes struck there.
"To die because someone was angry," she said, not finishing the sentence. "My son drove 65mph because he was so frugal with his gas mileage," she added, speculating the incident arose because her son wasn't driving fast enough. The Kansas City Star
reports he was in the Lee's Summit area to replace a mower that went out on him; Harter was one semester out from getting his degree in technical engineering from Missouri Western State University and ran a lawn-mowing business on the side. "He called his mom on the way home and said, 'I love you. I'll be home in just a bit,'" says dad Mike Harter. The family is pleading for witnesses to come forward, as are police, who have not yet released a description of the suspect or his vehicle.