NASHVILLE — A Berrien County teenager died in a traffic accident Monday, authorities said.
Keagan H. Kung-Korte, 17, of Nashville died in a single-vehicle crash that occurred around 3:20 p.m. on Old Valdosta Road near the intersection with Camp Tygart Road, according to statements from both the Georgia State Patrol and Berrien County Sheriff Ray Paulk.
The car failed to maintain its lane, hit a mailbox, spun and hit a tree and fence before stopping in a ditch, the patrol statement said.
Rebecca Kung, Kung-Korte’s mother, said her son was about two miles south from his home. She said her husband was on his way home and passed by the crash.
Kung-Korte was driving a white Hyundai Elantra, Kung said. When the car hit the fence, the fence’s wood “pierced the front window and sliced his carotid,” she said.
Deputies found Kung-Korte dead at the scene, Paulk said.
Kung said police told her he “would’ve been OK” had the cut been two centimeters farther.
Kung-Korte was a dual-enrolled student at Berrien High School and Valdosta State University. He was in his senior year and would have graduated in May.
“He loved animals,” Kung said. “He was smart. He was just starting to think about going to Emory (University) and possibly coming back to VSU for his master’s. He was interested in social work and counseling.”
She said her son debated between becoming a psychologist or an environmental engineer. He got good grades in school and excelled, she said.
Kung said he strived to help people feel welcomed and comfortable. She said he was an avid swimmer and was the first varsity swimmer at Valwood School when he attended.
Kung-Korte was Kung’s only child.
Terry Richards is senior reporter at The Valdosta Daily Times.