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Santa Claus makes one of his frequent stops during Saturday’s annual Parade of Lights in downtown Watertown to wish parade goers a happy holiday season. For more photos of the parade, see Page 4 and

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Four fatal crashes over holiday weekend in Watertown area

Authorities reported four fatal crashes in the area around Watertown over the past several days.

Early Thursday, a 21-year-old was killed near Waupun after striking a tree after evading a Dodge County Sheriff’s deputy, the DCSO reported.

That afternoon, a 67-year-old man was involved in a single-vehicle crash after reportedly fleeing a hit-and-run. He was transported by helicopter to a hospital and died from his injuries Saturday, the DCSO reported.

Just before 10 a.m. Saturday morning, five miles north of that crash, deputies found a person dead after a single-vehicle crash in the Town of Chester, near Shamrock and East Waupun roads.

And just over an hour later, a two-vehicle crash on State Highway 16 in the Town of Ixonia left one dead and another seriously injured, the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office reported.

The man who died at the hospital Saturday was identified Sunday as Joseph R. Berger of Cambria. None of the identities of the others killed in the crashes had been released as of Sunday morning.

In the first crash, the deputy attempted to stop a speeding car at 1:20 a.m. along County Hwy. C near U.S. Highway 151 in the Town of Trenton before the man sped away. The deputy found him about a minute later and extricated him but was unable to resuscitate him.

In the second, deputies responded to a report and discovered a 2015 Chevrolet had been traveling north on Shamrock Road and left the roadway, apparently striking a ditch and a culvert.

In the third crash, a preliminary investigation found both vehicles had been travelling westbound on 16 when the vehicle in front slowed down near County Highway SC and began to perform a U-turn. A vehicle behind it struck the turning vehicle on the driver’s side, killing the driver of the turning vehicle, the release said. The operator of the second vehicle was transported to a local hospital.

All four crashes and fatalities remained under investigation as of Sunday morning.

On Thursday, another crash near Watertown, on State Highway 26 on the city’s western edge, left one man with life-threatening injuries. The JCSO reported the man had been fleeing the scene of a hit-and-run on 26 near Juneau.

Mira Singh, 4, of Waunakee met with Santa and Mrs. Claus on Saturday morning at the Christmas in the Village event held in Johnson Creek. Above, Mrs. Claus gives Mira a candy cane.

Levi Birkholz, son of Gregg and Sheryl Birkholz, Watertown, signed his National Letter of Intent to play college basketball at The Citadel, a Division 1 school in Charleston, South Carolina at LLHS recently.