Victim in head-on crash with Cumberland County off-duty deputy was college basketball player

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Thursday, December 29, 2022
College basketball player dies in head-on crash with off-duty deputy
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A Livingstone College basketball player was identified as the driver killed in a head-on crash Monday with an off-duty Cumberland County deputy.

CUMBERLAND COUNTY, N.C. (WTVD) -- A Cumberland County deputy was involved in a deadly head-on collision on Monday evening that left a college basketball player dead.

The deputy, who was off duty, survived.

The crash happened just before 6 p.m. in the 4700 block of Goldsboro Road (US 13).

The Highway Patrol said a vehicle driven by Eric Henderson, of Virginia, crossed the center line and collided with the deputy's vehicle.

Henderson was not wearing a seatbelt, according to state troopers. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Livingstone College in Salisbury said Henderson was an academic sophomore but a freshman forward on the men's basketball team.

The school said Henderson was an honor student.

"He wanted to be at Livingstone College. He took pride in being a Blue Bear," said James Stinson, Livingstone Men's Basketball head coach. "He was willing to sacrifice to make sure everyone else was OK. He was the ultimate student-athlete. "

The deputy, Gary Clarke, was in his personal vehicle, state troopers said. Clarke was taken to Cape Fear Valley Medical Center with what were described as non-life threatening injuries.

The Highway Patrol said alcohol is not suspected as a factor in the crash.