Bulletin Staff Report

A 56-year-old La Pine man died Friday afternoon in a head-on collision after losing control of his car on U.S. Highway 97, an Oregon State Police investigation found.

Kevin Werts was southbound on the highway near milepost 159, 9 miles north of La Pine, in a white Toyota Camry when he lost control. Road conditions were packed snow and ice.

Werts slid into the northbound lane and collided with a gray Hyundai Santa Fe, driven by Susan Pitarro, 70, of Bend.

Werts died at the scene. Pitarro and her passenger, Terry Thompson, 63, of Bend were transported to St. Charles Bend with serious injuries.

The crash closed the highway for several hours Friday afternoon. Lanes were reopened before 7 p.m.

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