By Staff

NEEDHAM (CBS) – Two elderly women were killed Wednesday morning when a car slammed into a Needham home. The crash happened on Central Avenue around 10:30 a.m.

A car crashed into a Needham home, killing two elderly women. (WBZ-TV)

A heavily damaged car could be seen up against the home.

Needham Police said the 89-year-old man who was driving the car was taken to an area hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Two women passengers were rushed to the hospital but did not survive. The victims have been identified as 86-year-old Dr. Claire Van Ummersen and 89-year-old Ann Segal. Both women were Needham residents.

Ummersen served as vice-chancellor of the Board of Regents of the University of Massachusetts and as chancellor of the University of New Hampshire.

“Dr. Van Ummersen was a visionary leader, role model, and mentor to many higher education executives. Her firm, clear guidance on issues was always intertwined with a genuine interest in each individual with whom she was engaged — establishing lifelong respect and admiration for her accomplishments and style,” said former University System of New Hampshire Chancellor Edward R. MacKay.

Dr. Claire A Van Ummersen (Courtesy Photo)

Residents of the area said Central Avenue is often bumper to bumper.

“It is very busy when school lets out down here, and it is very busy when people are coming and going to work,” said one woman.

The driver is not facing charges at this time. The crash remains under investigation by Needham Police, the Norfolk District Attorney’s office, and Massachusetts State Police. Staff