The Georgia State Patrol is investigating a fatal collision between a vehicle and a pedestrian in Cordele.
Authorities say that 16 year old Precious Burns, a sophomore at Crisp County High School, was walking across Highway 41 just outside the city limits, to get to the bus stop when she was struck by a vehicle.
It was the start of the school day for 13-year-old Robert Jones. He and his sister were crossing US 41 to reach the bus stop when tragedy struck. "I crossed the street before her, then when I looked to see if she was with me but she wasn't and I heard the car hit her," he said.
Precious had been struck by a Kia Sephia. Her brother ran to her side. "I went up there to see if she was ok but she didn't answer,"
Burns was killed instantly. "I thought I was dreaming," said her brother.
Her sister Brittany, who is pregnant, went into shock.
Georgia State Patrol investigated the crash and do not anticipate filing charges against the driver, Kenneth Lewis of Cordele. He told troopers he didn't see the teen crossing the dark highway.
But family members say it was dangerous for kids to cross four lanes of traffic to get to the bus stop.
A statement issued by Crisp County Schools said the family had just moved in the home over the holidays and the children had only been using the bus service for two days.
They say "Our buses always pick up on the right side of the road on highways so she would have been picked on her side of the road without crossing the highway."
Still, relatives are grieving. "She liked to sing, dance and wanted to be a model and go to college. She was my only sister," said Robert Jones.
The State Patrol's specialized collision reconstruction team will look into the accident, but troopers do no anticipate filing any charges.
The Crisp Co. School System issued this release Tuesday afternoon--
Each day is a challenge. Today, is much more difficult than most. This morning, just before 7 a.m., a 16 year old high school student, Precious Burns, was struck by a car and killed as she crossed the highway to get to a bus stop. The accident happened on Hwy 41 just north of the Farmer's Market.
The family had moved to this home during the holidays. This was the second day that she would have ridden a bus. Monday, it is reported that the children missed the bus. The mother took the children to school.
Later, the mother called the bus stop to find out what bus to ride. Our buses always pick up on the right side of the road on highways, so she would have been picked up on her side of the road without crossing the highway.
Emergency personnel arrived on the scene and attempted to provide medical treatment. It was too late, she was gone. Precious Burns was a sixteen year old Crisp County High School student, gone to soon. I know that she has at least one brother, who crossed the highway ahead of her and had to tell his mother that his sister had been hit by a car.
Superintendent, Jay Brinson, said, "I am shocked and saddened by this awful tragedy. This young lady was a light in her family's life. My heart goes out to the parents in their time of pain and sorrow. Words cannot express my desire to comfort the parents. However, words cannot comfort a parent whose heart is broken. Maybe, in time, we will understand God's plan. For now, all we can do is grieve with the family."
Mr. Howard Fore, Crisp County High School Principal, implemented the school's Crisis Intervention Plan. The plan has focused the community's counseling resources at the school.
Mr. Fore will make a factual announcement to the entire student body. The counselors will be available to talk to any student who needs to talk about the situation. These resources will remain available as long as there is a need.
Please pray for this family and for the driver of the car. They need to feel God's comfort now, as they go through this unimaginable valley.
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