KERSHAW COUNTY, SC (WIS) - Winthrop University officials have identified three of the victims in a chain-reaction crash that happened approximately a half mile from the scene of the discovery of two missing North Carolina boys in the Wateree River Sunday evening.
University officials said Morgan LeAnne Hughes, 21, died after the car she was riding in with her roommates was hit by a Mercedes SUV while both were approaching stopped traffic due to the recovery of the boys' submerged car.
According to the South Carolina Highway Patrol, the accident happened around 8:00 p.m. in the westbound lanes of Interstate 20 near mile marker 98.
Hughes and her roommates, Christian McBee and Caitlin Livingston, were headed back to campus when the collision sent their vehicle careening into the median.
Livingston is expected to be released soon, Winthrop officials said. McBee is expected to remain in the hospital. Her condition has not been released.
"Our campus is truly lessened by Morgan's passing," said Vice President for Student Life Frank Ardaiolo. "Please join me in sending our thoughts and prayers to Morgan's family as we also pray for a quick and full recovery for Christian and Caitlin."
The SUV that slammed into the students was being driven by an 18-year-old man from New Jersey. He was transported to the hospital. The extent of injuries are not known.
The Mercedes also hit another vehicle driven by a 16-year-old from Leesville. The driver and passenger in that vehicle were uninjured.
It is unclear if any charges have been filed.
The Highway Patrol is investigating.