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Bend man, 77, killed in Hwy. 20 semi-pickup crash

OSP: Nicholas Fagen working under hood when hit

Bend man killed in crash on Highway 20

RILEY, Ore. - (Update: OSP identifies Bend man killed in crash; adding photo, background)

A 77-year-old Bend man working on his disabled pickup towing a trailer along U.S. Highway 20 in Harney County was killed early Wednesday morning when it was struck by a semi-truck, Oregon State Police reported.

Troopers and emergency personnel responded around 4:35 a.m. to the reported crash on Highway 20 near milepost 88.5, about 40 miles west of Burns and 45 miles east of Brothers, OSP and ODOT reported.

A preliminary investigation found that Nicholas Fagen was driving a Ford F-350 pickup heading west on the highway and towing a 40-foot "goose-neck" trailer loaded with two GMC pickups, troopers said.

The pickup became disabled and came to a stop, partially blocking the westbound lane, OSP said.

A Kenworth commercial motor vehicle driven by Lloyd Theen, 69, of Winlock, Washington, also was heading west and struck the trailer, pushing the vehicle combination off the roadway and onto the shoulder.

Fagen was outside of his pickup, working under the hood, when the semi hit his trailer. Troopers said he sustained fatal injuries and died at the scene.

A passenger in Fagen's truck, Danny Reinhart, 61, of Bend, sustained minor injuries and was treated at the scene, troopers said. Theen was unhurt in the crash. 

The crash spilled about 100 to 125 gallons of diesel fuel onto the road and into the westbound lane's ditch, OSP reported. SMAF, an environmental contractor, was called in to conduct cleanup.

The crash and investigation, as well as the hazardous-materials cleanup, closed the westbound lane for several hours. ODOT provided traffic control. OSP also was assisted at the scene by the Hines Fire Department and, Harney County EMS.

Fagan’s family, which moved to Bend in the 1950s, said “Nik,” as he was known, and his brother attended the old St. Francis School parish, and one of the guest rooms at what’s now the McMenamin’s Old St. Francis is named after them.


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