By Traci Chapman
A 64-year-old Piedmont man died during the early morning hours of Tuesday in an apparent one-car accident just north of the city.
Dr. Louis “Joe” Stratton, Jr., was apparently traveling to his home at about 4:35 a.m. when he hit a tree. The accident is still under investigation and no cause was yet released as of press time. The collision occurred north of Piedmont near the intersection of Apache Street and Morgan Road, officials said.
Dr. Stratton was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the collision, and the airbags in the 2014 Toyota XB he was driving did deploy, Oklahoma Highway Patrol officials said. He was pronounced deceased on the scene by Oklahoma Medical Examiner Devin Turner, according to OHP reports.
“Dr. Joe,” as he was known, graduated from Oklahoma State University in 1987 with a degree in veterinary medicine. The school was the alma mater of his late father, who graduated from there in 1955 and served as OSU’s first director of the College of Veterinary Medicine’s Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital.
Stratton worked for several day practices throughout his career, including in emergency medicine and at veterinary hospitals in Yukon, Mustang, El Reno and Oklahoma City and at Oklahoma Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.