Highway Worker from Kennewick Killed in Accident Near Athena

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A highway worker was killed Tuesday night in an accident on Highway 11 near Athena. (Photo: OSP)

A highway worker was killed Tuesday evening when she was hit by a vehicle on Highway 11 near Athena.

According to the Oregon State Police, Tyresa Monaghan, 49, of Kennewick, a construction zone flagger, had a vehicle stopped at milepost 16 when a silver 2005 Chrysler minivan side swiped the stopped vehicle and struck Monaghan. The minivan was operated by Leman Bledsoe, 76, of Milton-Freewater.

Monaghan suffered fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. Bledsoe continued for approximately one mile in the construction zone, endangering numerous other workers, before stopping, according to the OSP.

Bledsoe was transported to St. Anthony Hospital in Pendleton by ambulance.  He was treated and released from the hospital and taken into custody.  He was lodged at the Umatilla County Jail for DUII, two counts of reckless endangerment of another person, reckless driving, failure to perform the duties of a driver, reckless endangerment a highway worker. The OSP said additional charges are pending.

Highway 11 was closed for approximately 4 and half hours.