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Townsend man, 73, crashes van, killed in Mass. Pike crash

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LUDLOW — A 73-year-old Townsend man was killed and three other people were seriously injured Monday after a van went out of control on the Massachusetts Turnpike in Ludlow, crossed the median, and slammed into a guardrail and pickup truck on the other side of the highway.

State Police said Raoul Daunais, 73, of Townsend, was driving eastbound in his 2000 Dodge Ram van about 8:25 a.m., when the van crossed the median and the westbound travel lanes before striking a guardrail and then a westbound pickup truck.

Daunais was pronounced dead at the scene. A passenger in his van, Annette Daunais, 73, of Townsend, was seriously injured and taken to Bay State Medical Center in Springfield. She was in fair condition, according to a hospital spokesman.

Christopher Merrill, 45, of Auburn, was driving the pickup. He and passenger James Godfrey, 37, of Mendon, were both taken to Bay State Medical Center with serious injuries. A hospital spokesman said Merrill was listed in good condition and Godfrey was listed in fair condition.

State police are reconstructing the accident scene, and continue to investigate what caused Daunais to lose control of the van.

Daunais’ family declined to comment when contacted last night.