PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. - A 22-year-old Atlantic Beach woman died and two other people were injured early Friday morning in a head-on crash on A1A that blocked the coastal highway from Mickler Road to Vilano Beach for hours.
The Florida Highway Patrol said Morgan Delks was driving a Ford Focus driving north at a high rate of speed about 4:15 a.m. in the 1700 block of Ponte Vedra Boulevard when her car drifted over the center line into the path of a southbound Toyota 4Runner.
The driver of the SUV, Chan Nguyen, 41, of Jacksonville, tried to avoid the oncoming vehicle, but they collided, sending both vehicles spinning. The Focus ended up on the shoulder of the highway and the 4Runner struck a signpost and overturned in bushes along the side of the road.
Delks' father was very stoic and shared a statement with News4Jax Friday evening about his daughter, Morgan.
"She was a wonderful young woman, who embraced life. We are just in mourning right now. We would like privacy at this time."
Delks died at the scene. Delks' passenger, Mercedes McEwen, was taken to Baptist Medical Center Beaches and Nguyen was taken to UF Health Jacksonville, both with serious injuries.
Troopers said speed and alcohol were factors in the crash, adding that alcoholic containers were found in Delks' car.
Lanes reopened just before 9:30 a.m.
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