Georgetown church moves forward after tragedy

By Ava

GEORGETOWN, S.C. (WCIV) -- Friendly greetings and hugs lasted a little longer and church members held on a little tighter to each other, at the first service held at Lighthouse of Jesus Christ Church in Georgetown since the fatal car accident of three church members.

Last Wednesday a church caravan was headed to a revival in Russellville, when according to reports, an SUV with four church members collided with a Ford Fiesta, then caught on fire.

The Berkeley County Coroner identified church members Edith Jackson, Melvira Johnson, and Angie Author. Author's husband Johnny survived the crash and is in intensive care at MUSC.

All three women served on various boards, taught Sunday school classes and sang in the women's choir.

"She (Angie Author) hugged me and I didn't realize that was going to be my last hug," said Deaconess Judy Cooper.

Bonneau Police Chief Franco Fuda responded to the accident and attended the service.

"It just broke my heart to hear that these people were coming from church," said Fuda. {}

"We're thinking about them. We're praying for them and if they need us, we will be here," he said.

After the accident, church members say there was small talk of canceling service. Bishop Floyd Knowlin says that's not what these women would have wanted.

"If we didn't honor them today, I felt like we would not have done them justice," says Knowlin.