Teen Dies After Slamming Into School Bus, Then Police Find What Was In Her Hand

Note: we are republishing this story which originally made the news in September 2018.

In a tragic turn of events that has shaken the Panola County community, a young life was lost in a school bus crash. The Mississippi Highway Patrol has confirmed that the collision occurred at approximately 7:15 a.m. on Wednesday morning when a driver collided with a South Panola School bus. The victim has been identified as Katelyn Ray, according to family members.
The incident unfolded as Ray’s car rear-ended the back of a South Panola School bus on Highway 15 near Highway 6 in Panola County. This heartbreaking turn of events occurred while Ray was on her way to pick up her older sister from work. The last conversation between Katelyn and her mother, Shelia Ray, was a simple exchange of love and familial affection, a moment that would tragically become their final farewell.
Shelia Ray, recounting the sequence of events, expressed her disbelief at the subsequent turn of events. The family’s attempts to reach Katelyn were met with an eerie silence, prompting growing concern. The agonizing wait ended with a phone call from the highway patrol, delivering the devastating news of a severe car accident involving Katelyn.
According to the Mississippi Highway Patrol, the impact of the collision resulted in Katelyn Ray’s car forcefully colliding with the rear of the school bus. The timeline of events intensified the family’s worry, particularly when Katelyn failed to arrive at her sister’s workplace by 7:30 a.m. Courtney Pettit, the victim’s sister, shared the mounting anxiety, wondering about Katelyn’s whereabouts during those crucial moments.
Faced with uncertainty, Courtney Pettit turned to social media, making a poignant Facebook post seeking any information about her missing sister. It was during this desperate search that the family received the heart-wrenching news of the tragedy that unfolded on the highways of Panola County.
Stephanie Pettit, Katelyn’s aunt, expressed the family’s anguish, acknowledging the difficulty of imagining the circumstances that led to the crash. Katelyn, a proud aunt herself, was actively pursuing GED classes at the WIN Job Center, showcasing her vibrant and outgoing personality.
As the Panola County community grapples with the loss of a young life, the investigation into the crash is ongoing, spearheaded by the Mississippi Highway Patrol. The tight-knit community now mourns the passing of Katelyn Ray, who had recently obtained her driver’s license merely two months prior to the tragic accident. The void left by this unfortunate incident serves as a stark reminder of the fragility of life on the roads.

Sources: ABC 24






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