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Peace Corps Members Killed in Guinea

January 9, 2000

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Two 24-year-old Peace Corps volunteers were killed in a traffic accident in Guinea, West Africa, the Peace Corps announced Saturday.

The victims were Justin Bhansali of Huntsville, Ala., and Jesse Thyne of Pasadena, Calif.

``We are deeply saddened by these tragic deaths in Guinea,″ said Peace Corps Director Mark Schneider. ``They made enormous differences in the lives of many people in Guinea. Our thoughts are with their families and friends.

He said Bhansali and Thyne were passengers in the rear seat of a taxi with a third volunteer then the car was hit by a truck near the town of Pita, Guinea, at about 5:30 p.m. local time Friday, or 12:30 p.m. EST.

The third volunteer, Danielle Monty, 27, of Washington, Kan., was not seriously injured, nor were the driver and a woman in the front seat.

Bhansali and Thyne both were math teachers in the Labe region in the north of Guinea and had served in the West African country since June 1998.

Bhansali was a graduate of the University of Missouri, Thyne of the University of California-Santa Cruz.

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