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    Sunday, April 14, 2024

    Former Norwich alderman Terell Wilson dies of injuries suffered in April 16 crash

    Norwich – Former Alderman Terell Wilson, who was seriously injured in a head-on collision April 16 in Milford, died Monday after suffering heart failure over the weekend, a family spokeswoman said Monday.

    Wilson, 24, had been hospitalized at Yale-New Haven Hospital with numerous broken bones and collapsed lungs since the crash. His vehicle was struck head-on by a wrong-way driver on Interstate 95 in Milford, state police in Bridgeport reported that day.

    “Terell Wilson was an active member of our local NAACP branch and also served at the state level," Norwich NAACP branch President Jacqueline Owens said in a statement. “Our local branch is saddened by the untimely loss of one of our young bright lights and leader. Our prayers are with the family.”

    Owens was asked by Wilson's family to inform Norwich city leaders and others about Wilson's death.

    “I was just knocked off my feet,” Owens said Monday afternoon. “I've known Terell and Derell (his twin brother) in the Youth Counsel since they were 9 years old. It's just like losing my son. I know what it's like to lose a son.”

    Owens' two adult sons died of heart attacks.

    Wilson, a 2010 Norwich Free Academy graduate, served one term on the Norwich City Council from 2013 to 2015. He also served as president of the NAACP state Youth and College Council for five years.

    Wilson was the son of Byron and Debra Wilson of Greeneville and was one of eight siblings: Steven, Derell, his twin, Gilio, Gilia and Gilin, Yvodiva and Britton.

    Wilson had just started a new career as a financial adviser and planned to get married on July 14.

    The family last week had started a fundraiser campaign to help pay for expenses related to his recovery, and his parents were preparing to transfer him to a rehabilitation center following multiple planned surgeries. But Wilson's lungs collapsed during initial surgeries, delaying plans to insert a rod in his broken femur and to repair shattered ankles, his mother said last week.

    Over the weekend, Wilson suffered heart failure and was placed in an induced coma, Owens said, but he never recovered.

    The news of his death shocked city leaders, who had kept in contact with Wilson's family since the crash. Derell Wilson works as a site coordinator for an extended learning program at Kelly Middle School.

    “We've been involved with that family for a long time,” Norwich Superintendent Abby Dolliver said. “They've always been active participants in the community. Terell was a big supporter of education. They all went to Norwich public schools.”

    Mayor Deberey Hinchey announced Wilson's death at a crowded City Council budget hearing Monday night and called Wilson "a very brilliant and bright young man." She asked the audience to stand and observe a moment of silence.

    c.bessette@theday.com

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