BEEKMANTOWN -- Since Alexander Watts was eager for his three honey-bee hives to arrive at his Vermontville farm, he decided to attend his first bee-keeping seminar this weekend to prepare for their arrival.

But as the father of two young boys drove his large F-250 truck down the Ashley Road en route to the seminar Saturday morning, he failed to fully stop at the Spellman Road intersection. Watts died when he slammed into an oncoming Chrysler minivan, according to Plattsburgh-based State Police.

"He'd never been to Beekmantown before. He didn't know where he was going," said his devastated and distraught wife, Rebecca, whom he met during his college years at Paul Smith's.

After graduation, the pair settled into their 30-acre organic farm where they set out on an eight-year mission to build their dream home, which Watts was perfecting with his expanding carpentry skills.

As the young couple kept busy working toward their home and building their lives together, they were soon blessed with two sons, Alexander, 3, and Clayton, 2.

"He was such a wonderful father. Our family was everything to us," she said tearfully Saturday night. "He was such a great man. We thought we had our whole lives ahead of us."

The devoted 31-year-old family man spent much of his time working on the house and farm, but the avid hunter enjoyed spending long hours hiking through the Adirondacks, about six hours from where he grew up.

"He was extremely outgoing and he was such a sweet guy," said his mother-in-law, Alice Hayden, who drove to the family's home from Buffalo when she heard the devastating news Saturday morning. "I just can't believe this."

The driver of the minivan, Koleen Otis-Wisher, sustained serious injuries in the accident and was rushed to CVPH Medical Center. She was later transferred to Fletcher Allen Health Care for additional medical treatment.

Otis-Wisher -- a mother of two and former head coach of Clinton Community College's women's softball team -- was listed in stable condition at the Burlington hospital Saturday night.

"My prayers and thoughts are with (Otis-Wisher)," Mrs. Watts said.

State Police remained at the accident site through the morning working to reconstruct and investigate the crash. No additional information was available Saturday night.

avanvalkenburg@pressrepublican.com

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