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Richmond Hill police release victim's name in fatal wreck

The Richmond Hill Police Department has identified the victim in Thursday’s fatal accident at the intersection of U.S. 17 and Highway 144 as Joseph Gaffney, 95, of New York.

Maj. Michael Albritton said Gaffney was in a Hyundai Sonata northbound on U.S. 17 waiting to turn west on Highway 144 when the accident occurred shortly before 2 p.m. Gaffney was transported to a local hospital and was pronounced dead. Also injured in the accident was Gaffney’s wife. She remains hospitalized. Although the Gaffneys were from New York, it is believed they were living with their son in Richmond Hill, Albritton said.

The Gaffney’s were rear-ended by the driver of a Hyundai Sante Fe, pushing their vehicle into a third car which was then forced into a fourth vehicle, according to Albritton.

“At this time we do not believe drugs or alcohol were a factor in the accident,” Albritton said.

The driver of the Sante Fe, whose name is not being released, was cited for driving too fast for conditions. Albritton said police estimate the vehicle was traveling about 35 mph at the time of the crash. Albritton added that the driver could face additional charges.

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