|An accident occurred Friday at the intersection of U.S. 60 and the Bypass when a semi and car collided. The passenger in the car, Waylon Daugherty, died in the accident. The driver suffered injuries, but has since been released from the hospital. The individual driving the semi said he tried to avoid the collision, but was unable to stop. Photo above courtesy Chris Miller.
|Bath students grieving after second tragedy
|By Tom Marshall
Senior Advocate writer
Tragedy involving a Bath County student struck for a second time last Friday when a 15-year-old boy was killed in a traffic accident in Montgomery County.
Waylon Daugherty, 15, was killed when a vehicle he was a passenger in collided with a tractor-trailer at the intersection of Owingsville Road and the Bypass.
Daugherty was well liked at the school and enjoyed playing guitar and skateboarding, school counselor Tamela Porter said. She said the loss has been particularly hard on a very close set of friends he shared.
While he was more reserved in personality he was well thought of, Porter said.
Less than a week earlier Aaron Williams, a 17-year-old BCHS basketball player who lived in Mt. Sterling, was critically injured in a traffic accident.
The BCHS student body is in a state of mourning as result of the tragedies, Porter said.
“It’s going to be a rough few days, but we will get through it,” Porter said. “You never really know what to say or do for students. You just have to send a message that we’re here for them if they need anything and you just have to give them time to grieve.”
A state crisis team has been brought in from Frankfort with therapy dogs to help students in that process. Extra counselors have also been brought in from Montgomery and Nicholas counties, she said.
Porter said attendance at the high school was down Tuesday. She said she suspects many of the students stayed out of school to attend a graveside service for Daugherty in the afternoon.
The previous night students were bused from the high school to Davis and Davis Funeral Home in Stanton for visitation.
A Gofundme account has been set up to help the family. You can donate at www.gofundme.com/u952e88k.
The Daugherty accident was reported at 4:16 p.m. Friday. Daugherty was reportedly going to the movies with his girlfriend, Pashley Griffith, 16, when the accident occurred.
Griffith had been following another vehicle that had made a left turn on a green light from the westbound lane on Owingsville Road to the Bypass, Montgomery County Sheriff Fred Shortridge said.
Griffith, driving a 2002 Chevrolet passenger car, apparently thought she could make the turn as well, but passed in front of a 2004 International semi driven by Gary Pharris, 39, of Mt. Sterling, Shortridge said.
Pharris told authorities that he tried to avoid the collision but was unable to stop.
Griffith’s vehicle was struck in the passenger side where Daugherty was sitting, the sheriff said. Daugherty was taken to St. Joseph Mt. Sterling Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Griffith reportedly suffered a broken collar bone and was taken to the University of Kentucky Chandler Medical Center where she was treated and released.
She also attends BCHS.
A Gofundme account has also been set up for the Griffith family to offset costs associated with her medical care. You can donate at www.gofundme.com/cj57uud4.
The Williams family continues to ask for prayers for Aaron.
Aaron remains in a coma after suffering a severe head injury and numerous bone fractures suffered in the Sept. 19 accident on U.S. 60 in Bath County.
Chris Williams, Aaron’s father, said doctors have assured the family that their son’s condition is improving and he may soon be moved to Cardinal Hill Hospital.
“We’re optimistic,” Chris Williams said. “We’re getting encouraged by that.”
Judging by the horrific state of the car that was damaged and burned in the accident, the father said the fact his son is alive “is a miracle already.”
Veronica Williams, Aaron’s mother, who operates Veronica’s Hair Design in Mt. Sterling, urged the public to continue sending prayers her son’s way.
“We need everyone to pray, pray, pray,” she told the Advocate.
The couple says it has been the public’s prayers that has aided their son in his recovery to this point and they thank all those who have done so. Bracelets and T-shirts continue to be sold to raise money for the family.
There will be a benefit motorcycle ride to raise money for the Williams family this Saturday. The cost is $10 a hand. Signups begin at 9 a.m. Participants are to meet in the city parking lot behind Downtown Athletic Club. The ride leaves at 11 a.m.
There, you can also pick up vouchers for Pizza Hut, which will allow a portion of your bill to go to benefit the family if you eat there on Sunday. Participation in the ride is not required.
A Gofundme account has also been established for the Williams family. You can donate at www.gofundme.com/4c3kyw8zv6x.