Julie Holderness (Submitted photo)
Julie Holderness (Submitted photo)

LINVILLE, N.C. (WGHP) — One woman has died and additional four people were injured after a fatal collision before a race at Grandfather Mountain on Thursday night.

State Troopers came to the parking lot of Chestnut Construction adjacent to US-221 after getting reports of a vehicle colliding with several pedestrians.

Participants in the race and spectators were in the area as part of the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games. Thursday’s event was “The Bear,” a five-mile footrace that leads to the top of Grandfather Mountain.

James Russell Deni, 80, of Boone, was driving a Ford van when he attempted to leave a parked position and accelerated into a group of pedestrians. After striking the pedestrians, the van struck a John Deere Gator utility vehicle before coming to a stop.

Julie A. Holderness, 72, of Greensboro, died as a result of injuries sustained in the collision.

Four other people were injured all with injuries to the leg, neck and knees.

Deni is being charged with the following:

  • Unsafe movement
  • Misdemeanor death by vehicle

The investigation is still ongoing.