Oregon man dies in motorcycle crash east of Safford

By Jon Johnson


GRAHAM COUNTY – Stephen Douglas Jones, 67, of Oregon, was found deceased Tuesday afternoon after crashing his silver, 2015 Yamaha motorcycle on Haekel Road in a single-vehicle accident. According to Graham County Undersheriff Jeff McCormies, Jones’ family has been notified of his passing. 

Graham County Dispatch notes reported the responding party drove up to the crash scene at about 1 p.m. and discovered Jones pinned under the motorcycle and that his helmet had flown off in the crash. The respondent said he pulled the motorcycle off Jones and moved his leg in order to start cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). 

A Bureau of Land Management (BLM) ranger arrived at the scene as well as deputies with the Graham County Sheriff’s Office (GCSO). Law enforcement noted paramedics with LIfeline Ambulance declared Jones deceased at the scene at 1:29 p.m. 

McCormies said Jones appeared to have just been passing through the area at the time of the crash. The popular Hot Well Dunes Recreation Area is located off Haekel Road. The area is under BLM care.     

What appeared to be a journal was also found at the scene. On entry reported that Jones had “easily did 100 miles per hour and still had lots of throttle left. Love it, but it got squirrely with me in the last bit of road to the Hot Well Dunes 30 miles out of Safford.”

The speed limit for that area of roadway is 45 mph, and the officer noted that it appeared that Jones was traveling too fast to negotiate a curve to the left in the road and crashed.