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North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said Friday that two people died in McDowell County as a result of Michael, bringing the state’s death toll from the storm to three.

Cooper said a man and a woman died after their car hit a large tree that had fallen across a road in Marion. 

“We extend our heartfelt sympathy to the loved ones and friends of those killed,” Gov. Cooper said in a news release. “We urge everyone to remain safe. While the storm has moved on, there is still much clean up and repair to be done.”

Troopers said the crash happened just before 7:30 p.m. Thursday on Tom's Creek Road.

The female passenger, later identified by NCHP as 64 year-old Sharon Tipton Lewis of Old Fort, died at the scene.

The male driver, identified as 70-year-old Billy Lawing of Old Fort, died at the hospital.

Troopers said the driver could not see the tree on the dark road until it was too late.

Another vehicle heading the opposite direction struck the same tree a short time later and the people in that vehicle were unhurt and discovered the deadly wreck on the other side.

Michael also claimed the life of one man around 1 p.m. Thursday when a tree fell on his car in Iredell County, Cooper said.

As of Friday afternoon Cooper said 408,000 people in North Carolina remained without power and 301 roads remained closed due to fallen trees or washouts.

Cooper said people can call 2-1-1 for information on storm recovery and resources.

Copyright 2018 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Multimedia Producer

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