An off-duty La Pine Rural Fire Protection District captain died Friday when the car he was driving collided with a southbound vehicle on Highway 97.
James Hudson Palmer, 37, was attempting to turn onto the highway from State Recreation Road north of La Pine at about 5:35 p.m., according to a news release from Oregon State Police.
Palmer's 2005 Honda Civic collided with a 1963 Chevrolet Nova heading south on the highway, driven by Roy Gus McMahon and Kimberly Marie McMahon, both 48, of La Pine.
Palmer was pronounced deceased at the scene.The McMahons received non-life threatening injuries and were transported by ambulance to St. Charles Medical Center in Bend. It is believed that all three were wearing safety belts at the time of the crash.
Palmer had served as a captain with the La Pine Rural Fire Protection District since 1999.
OSP troopers from the Bend Area Command office responded to the crash, assisted by the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office, La Pine Rural Fire Protection District and Oregon Department of Transportation.
Highway 97 was reduced to one lane of travel for roughly two hours as crews cleared the roadway and conducted an on-scene investigation. That investigation is ongoing.