Homer woman dies in two-car accident

The family of a Homer woman killed in a car crash held an informal memorial on Tuesday at AJ’s Steakhouse and Tavern. A two-car crash on icy roads last Tuesday afternoon killed Kayla Rodasti, 29.

Rodasti worked at AJ’s as its bookkeeper. She would have turned 30 on Dec. 13. Rodasti is survived by her husband, Bob Van Oordt, and two daughters.

The only person in her car, Rodasti was pronounced dead at the scene near Mile 145 Sterling Highway in Happy Valley. All six people in the other car involved, including three children, suffered injuries. Emergency medical technicians transported them to South Peninsula Hospital. 

Two younger children with life threatening injuries were later taken by air ambulance to an Anchorage hospital. Alaska State Trooper spokesperson Megan Peters said she did not know the condition of the injured people. 

The crash happened about 5:30 p.m. Nov. 25. According to a trooper press release, Rodasti had been driving south in a Subaru when she lost control on the icy road and crossed into the northbound lane. A Kia driven by Cristina Reutov, 24, of Homer, hit the Subaru on the passenger side. In the Kia with Reutov were two other adults and three children. Troopers said all the people involved wore seatbelts except for a child who was not properly restrained.

Anchor Point Fire and Emergency Medical Services responded with two ambulances and 14 personnel, said assistant chief Doug Loshbaugh. Ninilchik EMS and the Homer Volunteer Fire Department provided mutual aid with one ambulance each. Loshbaugh said emergency responders were at the scene until 8:20 p.m.

The crash fully closed the highway for about an hour, and the highway was open to alternating lanes of traffic until 11 p.m., Peters said. Anchor Point troopers and Soldotna Bureau of Highway Patrol responded. No charges have been filed, but as is standard with fatal crashes, a toxicology screening will be done on the drivers, Peters said. 

The icy roads were a contributing factor in the crash, she said. People should expect road conditions to vary and use caution and driver slower, Peters said.

Michael Armstrong can be reached at michael.armstrong@homernews.com.