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Driver in fatal wreck dies from injuries

POSTED: September 30, 2013 8:24 p.m.

South Effingham High School paid tribute at Friday’s homecoming game to a current student and an alumnus who died during the week.


SEHS senior Lacey Longworth, 17, died at the scene of a one-vehicle crash last Tuesday on Bay Road near Old River Road.


The driver, her brother and 2012 SEHS graduate Henry Longworth, 20, was critically injured in the wreck. He died Friday afternoon, just a few hours before the homecoming crowd gathered at The Corral.


“As brother and sister, they looked out for each other and were proud of each other’s accomplishments,” said South Effingham Principal Mark Winters. “As SEHS students, they enjoyed school, their friends and the thrills of high school.”


South Effingham observed a moment of silence prior to the game. The SEHS student section recognized Lacey at the kickoff and throughout the game by holding their index fingers and thumbs to form an “L.”


“We will remember the smiles, the laughter and love of life that we shared with Henry and Lacey,” Winters said.


According to the Georgia State Patrol, Henry Longworth lost control of a Chevrolet Trail Blazer on a curve. The sport utility vehicle hit a utility pole and overturned.


A third person in the car, who was not seriously injured, told investigators that Longworth had been speeding. A conversation took place in the SUV just prior to the crash that “the goal was to get to 100 miles per hour on Bay Road,” according to Sheriff Jimmy McDuffie.


Henry and Lacey Longworth both attended Sand Hill Elementary School, South Effingham Middle and SEHS. Henry was in the first class of graduates from Effingham County’s Project SEARCH, a program to provide internships to students and train them in entry-level positions.


“Henry was an amazing guy. Being in Project SEARCH with him was a blessing,” said fellow graduate Caitlyn Johnson.


Johnson added that she wanted to give up on Project SEARCH at one point, but Longworth “pushed me to succeed. He had the best smile, always smiling. He’s awesome and very sweet. I’ll never forget him.”

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