Blythewood dad, daughter injured in crash

McKinna and Chris Morris

BLYTHEWOOD – The Blythewood youth softball league rallied together to support one of its own over the weekend.

Nine-year-old McKinna Morris, who plays on the 8U Bobcats softball team and was a member of the 10U All Star team, and her father Chris were on their way home from a tournament in Charleston on Sunday when they were in an accident at the intersection of I-95 and I-26 near Orangeburg.

McKinna and her father were transported to Prisma Health Hospital in Columbia. McKinna had a lacerated spleen and burns on the back of her leg from hot car liquids. She had the first of multiple reconstructive surgeries on Tuesday morning and is now home recovering.

McKinna’s father, Chris, was placed in a medically induced coma with extensive injuries, including multiple breaks in both legs and arms. On Monday, Prisma Health surgeons repaired his legs and one arm and wrist, but had to place a steel rod in his other wrist. Chris suffered burns on his face as well. On Tuesday, the Blythewood Bobcats posted on Facebook that Chris was out of ICU after an extensive surgery on Monday, and that he will begin the long road to recovery.

“Chris has a long road ahead,” the post stated, “but as you can see he is strong and a fighter.”

Perhaps a family trait, McKinna’s 8U coach, Jordan Atkinson, described her the same way: strong.

McKinna plays first base for the 8U team and is a power hitter. Atkinson said she probably leads the team in RBI’s and extra base hits. She’s a valued member of the 8U Bobcats team, but not just because of her talents. Her teammates also love her for her sense of humor.

When Atkinson received news of the accident, she emailed the team’s parents so they could break the news to McKinna’s teammates.

“It’s been difficult for her teammates to comprehend everything,” Atkinson said. “They’re 7 and 8 year olds. They were concerned about her and worried if she can still play ball, things like that.”

There’s no doubt that the Bobcats will miss having McKinna on the field as she recovers. The team and their parents have rallied their support in the few days since the accident. Parents initiated a meal train to feed the Morris family each evening.

The third day of softball camp at Blythewood High School, Atkinson painted McKinna’s number, 11, next to first base. The girls gathered around the base for a photo, which they sent to McKinna before she went into surgery on Tuesday morning.

BHS softball campers honor McKinna with a painted 11, her Bobcats’ jersey number, by first base on Monday night.

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