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Man dies in Hwy. 197

Oregon State Police is continuing the investigation into Thursday morning’s two-vehicle traffic crash that resulted in the death of an adult male and injuries to his wife and daughter on Highway 197, about 5 miles north of Dufur. The names of the victim and his injured wife and daughter are released in this update.

On Aug. 14, at approximately 7:30 a.m., a 1992 Chevrolet Blazer driven by Linda Girtz, 59, from Wamic, was traveling northbound on Highway 197 near milepost 8, approaching the intersection with Ward Road. A 2005 Chevrolet pickup driven by Peter D. Kelly, 73, from The Dalles, was westbound on Ward Road and turned in front of the northbound sport utility vehicle which struck the pickup’s left side. After impact, the pickup came to rest off the side of the highway and the sport utility vehicle came to rest in the southbound lane.

The Blazer’s 72-year old male right front passenger, Henry Jacob Girtz, was pronounced deceased at the scene. Linda Girtz was transported by LifeFlight to Oregon Health & Science University with serious injuries. The 17-year old right rear passenger, Marina Girtz, was transported by ground ambulance to Mid-Columbia Medical Center in The Dalles with non-life threatening injuries. All three were using safety restraints.

Kelly was not injured and is cooperating with the investigation.

OSP troopers from The Dalles Area Command office are investigating the fatal crash. Trooper Jason Walters is the lead investigator. Enforcement action is pending.

OSP was assisted at the scene by Dufur Fire Department, Wasco County Sheriff’s Office, Mid-Columbia Fire & Rescue, and Oregon Department of Transportation.

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