A state Department of Transportation worker was killed and two others injured in a two-vehicle crash Thursday morning south of Ninety Six.

Charles “Chuck” Kennedy, 59, died at the scene, Greenwood County Coroner Sonny Cox said. In a statement to media, DOT secretary Christy Hall said Kennedy was driving a department van when an oncoming car crossed the centerline and struck the DOT vehicle head-on. Two people in the van were also injured, and both were taken to an area hospital for treatment. A 24-year-old Bradley man was driving alone in the car and was also taken to an area hospital.

The crash happened at 6:17 a.m. on U.S. Highway 178 near Scotts Ferry Road, according to the state Highway Patrol. Master Trooper Brandon Bolt said the Bradley man was driving a 2012 Chrysler 200 west along Highway 178 when the car went left of the centerline and hit the 2017 Chevrolet Express van head-on. Sunrise was at about that time, and Greenwood saw light rain Thursday morning.

The unmarked van sat Thursday morning in the ditch beside Highway 178, the Chrysler beside it, both with severe damage to the fronts. Highway Patrol officials were still on scene at about noon, alongside Department of Transportation officials, investigating the wreck. Both vehicles had their driver-side doors removed so officials could get the drivers out, though the van’s passengers were not trapped.

“Our hearts are broken again as we suffer through another death of an SCDOT Team member and two more who were injured,” Hall said. “Our hearts go out to the families. They can be sure that SCDOT will support them in any way possible.”

According to DOT, Kennedy was an avid fisherman and racing fan who enjoyed playing golf with his coworkers at McCormick Country Club. He never met a stranger and was known for his sense of humor. Kennedy joined the department February 2020. He leaves behind a wife, Mary, two children and a number of grandchildren.

Highway Patrol’s Multi-disciplinary Accident Investigation Team is assisting.