Georgetown chef killed in motorcycle crash

troot@thesunnews.comOctober 25, 2013 

Chris Kirwin - photo courtesy of Zest's Facebook page

— Troopers with the S.C. Highway Patrol continued Friday to investigate a motorcycle crash that killed a Georgetown chef, who worked at a restaurant that burned in the Sept. 25 fire on Front Street, according to authorities.

Christopher Kirwin, 28, of Myrtle Beach was pronounced dead at Waccamaw Community Hospital at 7:48 a.m. Thursday from internal injuries he suffered in the crash, according to the Georgetown County Coroner’s Office.

Kirwin was a chef at Zest, which was housed in one of the seven historic buildings in the 700 block of Front Street that was destroyed by fire. The sushi and pizza restaurant had only been open a few months at 719 Front St., before the blaze.

The restaurant reopened earlier this month as Seven Hundred Modern Grill and Bar and posted the following on their Facebook page: “Brother, we will miss you immensely. You didn’t even know this, but you have become our best friend.”

According to Kirwin’s Facebook page, he had studied culinary arts at Horry-Georgetown Technical College and previously worked at Islamorada Fish Company. Dozens of friends and family members posted tributes to the North Myrtle Beach native.

“If only I wasn't running behind maybe I could have been there to watch your back like a big bros suppose to do If only I knew the red lights up ahead of me were for you. Miss you and RIP lil bro,” wrote Mikey Kirwin at 3:40 p.m. Thursday.

At 7:18 a.m. Friday, Kirwin’s mother, Ellen Kirwin, wrote: “Today, I have to do something no mother should ever have to do, I have to go to the funeral home and finalize the arrangements for her son. I'm completely heartbroken. But I take some solace in knowing he had great friends like you guys. I also take some comfort in knowing that he's in heaven now with his dad and his dog and meeting his grandmother for the first time, and all the other people that left this earth before he did. Love to you all.”

The crash remains under investigation by troopers as to whether any charges will be filed, said Cpl. Sonny Collins with the highway patrol.

Kirwin was traveling southbound on U.S. 17 at 7:20 a.m. Thursday on his 2009 Kawasaki motorcycle, Collins said. Kirwin, who was wearing a helmet, struck a 2006 Buick that failed to yield the right-of-way when the 47-year-old woman driving attempted to cross U.S. 17 from Sandy Island Road.

No charges had been filed as of 8:30 a.m. Friday.

Contact TONYA ROOT at 444-1723 or follow her at Twitter.com/tonyaroot.

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