Police in Butler County, Pennsylvania, recently identified the 15-year-old girl who was killed in a car accident on Wednesday in the town of Clay.
The girl was killed when the SUV in which she was riding rolled over around 11:15 p.m. on Thompson Road. A 17-year-old boy was driving. He remains in the hospital. The girl was pronounced dead at the scene, about 15 minutes after the crash is believed to have happened.
The girl would have been a junior at Koch High School had she lived to see the new school year begin. The school issued a statement praising her "positive influence on friends, classmates and district staff."
Naturally, it is a sad occasion anytime someone dies in a car accident such as this one, but this may be a sadder incident than most. A 15-year-old's life has barely just begun. By rights, she should have gotten to experience many of the important rites of passage we all go through when we are slightly older than she was, such as going to prom, getting a driver's license and heading off to college. But because of this unfortunate SUV rollover, she will never get those chances.
Nothing will ever replace a loved one who dies in a motor vehicle accident. Nor can anything repair an injury except time and rehabilitation. But if a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit can obtain a settlement or award that is used to defray funeral expenses and/or medical costs, then it at least removes some financial and practical stresses from a family's life. Sometimes, such lawsuits also earn grieving family members recompense for loss of companionship or give injury survivors compensation for pain and suffering.
Source: Pittsburg Post-Gazette, "Girl, 15, killed in Butler County crash identified," Peter Sullivan, July 13, 2012