YORK COUNTY, S.C. — A 19-year-old driver behind the wheel of a pickup truck has been charged after a crash involving a riding lawnmower that killed a man and a 13-year-old girl Saturday night in York County, officials said. A three-year-old is also in critical condition, said a local pastor.
Troopers said the crash happened just after 8:30 p.m. on Homestead Road in Rock Hill.
The Ford Ranger, driven by Christopher Mullis, of Rock Hill, was traveling east on Homestead Road when they ran off the right side of the road, overcorrected, and went into the opposite lane, hitting Christopher Kernaghan, 32, who was mowing a lawn.
Kernaghan had his three-year-old son on his lap at the time of the collision next to the Faith Family Christian Center. Both were thrown from the mower.
The father died at the scene and his son is in a hospital in critical condition, officials said.
Jessie Purser, 13, a passenger in the Ford, was thrown from the truck and taken to a hospital where she died. Another passenger in the Ford was also hurt.
Rev. Larry Williams is a pastor at the center close to where the crash happened and said he got to the scene as soon as he could.
“When I came on the scene that night at about 8:45 p.m., it was just horrible and once I found out what happened, I immediately begin to pray for the situation,” Williams said. “I think the greatest thing we can do is pray for everybody that is involved and especially the three-year-old child that was involved.”
Williams asked for everyone to keep them in their prayers.
“We call him Baby Ray so if the community can pray for Baby Ray for his condition, we are just praying for a miracle to take place. But just pray for everybody that’s involved. It’s just a really, really tragic situation.”
Mullis was jailed and faces felony charges.
Two other passengers in the Ford were also taken to a hospital.
The crash is still under investigation by the highway patrol and the York County Coroner’s Office.
This is a developing story; check back at wsoctv.com for updates.
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