One killed, multiple others injured in incident with vehicle at Highland Games

LINVILLE, North Carolina (WBTV) – Several people were injured and one was killed after a crash involving a vehicle Thursday night at Grandfather Mountain.

According to North Carolina State Highway Patrol (NCSHP), one woman died from the collision and four others were injured.

Participants were preparing to run “The Bear” foot race when the incident occurred around 6:52 p.m. at the intersection of US 221 and NC Highway 105.

The collision happened when a Ford Econoline van attempted to pull out of a parked position and accelerated into a crowd. After hitting pedestrians, the van also slammed into a John Deere Gator before coming to a stop.

The police are investigating. Officials told WBTV they believe the accident was a “terrible accident”.

State troopers identified Julie Holderness, 72, of Greensboro, the deceased victim.

Three men, aged 43, 45 and 61, were injured, along with an unknown victim.

The operator of the van, identified as James Russell Deni, 80, has been charged with dangerous travel and misdemeanor death by vehicle.

The runners had been lined up at the start line and had to run five miles to the top of Grandfather Mountain.

The police are investigating. Officials told WBTV they believe the accident was a “terrible accident”.

The race was part of Grandfather Mountain Highland Gamesand was immediately canceled after the incident.

“On my behalf and on behalf of the entire Grandfather Mountain Highland Games organization and family, we are deeply saddened by tonight’s devastating event and extend our condolences to those affected,” said Steve Quillin, President of Grandfather Mountain Highland Games.

The remaining Highland Games activities will continue as planned, according to a Facebook post.

The incident is still under investigation.

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