Morgan Patten Death, Still a Mystery?

Last Updated on September 19, 2023, 4:28 am

The woman from ‘Morgan miles to go’ campaign still awaits justice.

Morgan Patten Death
Morgan Patten (Image via Facebook)

Morgan Patten, a young woman from Martha’s Vineyard, travels miles for 13 hours to Jacksonville to see her fiancé, Phil Brandon, a Marine at Advanced Infantry Batallion (AITB, Camp Geiger, who was going to be on liberty for three days for Veterans Day Holiday weekend, to celebrate their engagement anniversary.

She checked into a hotel, and her fiancé would join her the next day. She stepped outside to have dinner at a nearby Applebee’s diner. She had been in touch with her parents over the phone. She left the dinner and told her parents she was going to bed.

But she never made it to her room at the hotel. She never met her fiancé. Instead, she was found dead at a crash miles from her hotel near a small town. A local man heard the crash, called the authorities, and rushed there to assist the passengers of the crashed truck.

There were three people in the vehicle: two men and a woman. The woman was identified as Morgan Patten. She had been ejected from the vehicle, and her legs were underneath the truck.

First responders arrived at the scene and pulled her from underneath the truck but could not save her life. She was pronounced dead at the scene at 11:07 pm on November 8, 2019.

According to Highway Patrol Sergeant John Edwards, the vehicle’s driver, Hunter Wells, a Camp Lejeune Marine, crashed his Chevrolet Silverado pick-up truck while driving at a very high speed. He received minor injuries, and the man in the back of the seat, Charles(Charlie) Cornwall, also a Marine, had received critical injuries, and they were transported to the hospital. They both survived the crash.

According to Hunter Wells, they were drinking together and were going shooting when the accident happened. There were conflicting statements from the bartender. It has been over two years since the accident, yet it remains a mystery.

The details do not make any sense to Morgan’s Parents. They have been fighting for justice for their baby girl ever since. So many questions remained unanswered: how did Morgan end up with two strangers in the truck? What happened at the restaurant bar? Was Morgan forced to get into the truck? Morgan’s parents believe there was foul play involved.

Her parents, Steve and Renee Patent, initiated the ‘Miles to Go’ campaign. They created the website and email [email protected], where potential witnesses could contact them directly if they had any information about the incident and a Facebook page, ‘Morgan’s Miles to go,’ to raise awareness. The slogan ‘Miles to go’ is from her favorite poem, ‘Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening’ by Robert Frost. The poem ends at,

“The Woods are lovely, dark, and deep,

But I have promises to keep,

And miles to go before I Sleep,

And miles to go before I Sleep.

It embodies staying strong in the long run, which her parents and campaign supporters have done for nearly three years. They have knocked on every door and turned every stone in search of answers and justice for Morgan.

According to the North Carolina Highway Patrol, the driver, Hunter Wells, was charged with vehicle homicide, driving while intoxicated, reckless driving, and speeding. Though circumstances, conflicting statements, and partial DNA found under Morgan’s nail bed suggested foul play, no other charges were leveled against them due to lack of evidence.

Morgan’s parents are still fighting for justice. The supporters of the campaign have overwhelmed them with their support. They have raised their voice for justice for Morgan and stood in solidarity with her parents.

Many news channels and podcasts have covered the incident to keep Morgan’s memory alive and uncover the truth. The justice will not bring Morgan back into her parents’ lives, but it could get them peace; knowing that justice has been done could comfort them.

Our thoughts and prayers go to Morgan’s parents and their tireless efforts in their ‘Miles to go.’


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