Icy road conditions were blamed Friday for a crash north of Omaha that killed two men.
George Trobaugh, 59, of Omaha and Frank Besch, 54, of Valley died Thursday in the crash on Bennington Road near Nebraska Highway 133.
Trobaugh's former wife said the Nebraska State Patrol told her that the pickup the men were in slid off the roadway after skidding on a section of “black ice,'' a thin clear patch of ice that is difficult to spot.
“There was no way they could have avoided it,'' said Ricky Ann Trobaugh. “It happened so fast.''
George Trobaugh was driving the pickup, the State Patrol said, and both men were wearing seat belts.
Ricky Ann Trobaugh, 49, said Besch was her ex-husband's boss. She said the men were returning to work from Besch's home in Valley.
Besch owns Barnett & Ramel Optical on North 16th Street in Omaha, she said. Trobaugh was vice president of special projects.
“He was a wonderful person,'' she said of her former husband. “He loved his kids so much.''
She said that she and her husband divorced a couple of years ago but remained friends.
The couple had a 27-year-old son and an 18-year-old daughter.
Bailee Trobaugh said that her father suffered a major stroke six years ago and that “he recovered pretty well.''
She said her father was a Navy veteran who earned a college degree in psychology and communications.
He and Besch were best friends, she said.
The State Patrol said Trobaugh was eastbound in a 2003 Ford Ranger pickup truck when it left the roadway and rolled, striking a tree on the south side of Bennington Road.