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Two motorcyclists and dog injured in accident

Kaitlyn Riley

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The incident remains under investigation by the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office.

The Vernon County Sheriff’s office responded to a van vs. motorcycle crash around 11:30 a.m. Friday. It happened on State Hwy 80 south of County Road EE in the town of Greenwood.

Samantha M. Baly, 31, of rural Wonewoc, was driving south and turned into a private driveway, according to a news release. She did not see two motorcycles traveling north and turned into their path. The sheriff’s office said Stephen R. Cournia, 78, of rural Richland Center could not avoid colliding with Baly’s vehicle.

Cournia was towing a small motorcycle trailer behind his motorcycle with a dog in it. The motorcycle trailer dislodged from the motorcycle and hit another motorcycle that was behind Cournia. The driver of that motorcycle, Bruce W. Gander, 60, of rural Lone Rock lost control and slid down the road.

Cournia was transported from the scene by Hillsboro EMS to Gundersen St. Joseph’s Hospital in Hillsboro with serious injuries and later flown to Gundersen Health Systems in Lacrosse by Gundersen Air. Gander was treated and released with non-life-threatening injuries from Gundersen St. Joseph’s Hospital.

Baly had five juveniles in her vehicle who were not hurt, according to the sheriff’s office. Cournia’s dog was taken by private vehicle to the Madison Animal Hospital with serious injuries.

The incident remains under investigation by the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office.