RIPLEY COUNTY, In. (FOX19) - Red flowers now mark the spot of a deadly crash that took the life of a 15-year-old Butler County boy on Monday.
Bryce Hizer reportedly sustained fatal injuries in the collision and was pronounced dead at the scene.
The crash happened around 2 p.m. on Oxford Pike near Dorrel Road in Franklin County, Indiana, officials say.
The car, a Pontiac, was being driven by 18-year-old Zachary Ferneding, officials say.
16-year-old Vivian Hilbert, 16-year-old Zachary Dockery, and 15-year-old Tyler Heatherly were also in the car.
As Indiana State Police continue their investigation into the crash, Hizer’s mother is grieving.
“The cops came and told me that my son has passed and in a car accident and I didn’t want to believe it," Kelly Baker told FOX19 NOW. “That’s when I got the news that my son was no longer with me.”
It’s a day Baker says she won’t ever forget.
Right now she says she’s taking it day by day, holding on to memories of her son, who she says was a freshman at Talawanda High School.
“He liked to draw," Baker said. “He liked to hang with his friends, listen to music.”
According to Indiana State Police, their initial investigation revealed Ferneding was traveling East on Oxford Pike when he lost control of the car. It then left the roadway and rolled, with Ferneding thrown from the vehicle.
He was flown to UC with serious injuries.
The other passengers were transported to local hospitals.
As for Baker, she says she thinks there’s more to the story.
“They were playing games in this car, and one of the kids grabbed a hold of the wheel, and they veered it off the road and into the trees," Baker said. "These people that came to get him that day were not his normal group of friends.”
Baker says she also believes there was a delay in calling 911, which she says could ultimately have led to her son’s death.
Since the crash, Baker explains she’s visited the area where it happened. She placed the red flowers there in memory of her son.
“I just dropped down to the ground because I felt something pull me down,” Baker said, when describing how she felt visiting the crash sight.
“He was just so outgoing and he loved life,” she continued. “He loved all the happiness and happy things that happened in life, and that’s what he went for."
Indiana State Police say alcohol and drugs are not believed to be factors in the crash at this time.
We’re told counselors will be available at the school when students return on Monday.
Hizer’s family tells us they’re working on funeral arrangements right now.
If you’d like to help them pay for funeral expenses, you can donate directly to the The Ogle & Paul R. Young Funeral Home in Oxford.