FHP identifies Palm Bay couple killed crossing US 1

Troopers say Carl Burch, 77, and Mary Burch, 70, were crossing road to restaurant


MALABAR, Fla. – Florida Highway Patrol has identified the couple who was struck and killed trying to cross U.S. 1 on their way to a popular Malabar restaurant.

77-year-old Carl Burch and 70-year-old Mary Burch, both of Palm Bay, were on their way to meet some relatives for dinner on Thursday evening at the Yellow Dog Cafe when they were hit by a Toyota sedan.

Troopers said Marquese Turner, 25, of Palm Bay was driving the Toyota. He was taken to Palm Bay Hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The speed limit in the area is 45 miles per hour. Right now, investigators said they do not believe the driver was speeding. They also do not believe alcohol was a factor.

"U.S. 1 is a very busy highway. There's no crosswalk here, it's not at an intersection," said FHP Lt. Channing Taylor. "Personally, I wouldn't want to be crossing this road."

Stuart Borton is the chef and operator of the Yellow Dog Cafe. He heard the screeching sound of the crash and ran to help.

"It's horrific. It's probably the worst thing I've ever seen in my life," said Borton.

Borton said the road is so dangerous, his restaurant has offered free valet parking for years, but in light of Thursday night's tragedy, he's hoping the state will take action.

"We've tried for years to get the speed limit lowered and it's just been an uphill battle," said Borton.