Students, faculty mourn teen hit by a truck in northern Utah
PERRY, Utah — It was a somber day at Box Elder High School Monday, as students and faculty coped with the loss of Alexis Nelson.
“The students alike, the staff just adored Alexis,” Suzanne McBride, a teacher at the school, told KSL. “She was one of those kids that all the kids missed when she wasn’t there.”
Nelson, 16, who was a junior, died Monday from injuries suffered when she and Sarah Hardy, 14, were struck by a pickup truck while crossing U.S. 89 Sunday afternoon, police said.
Hardy, who isn’t a student in the Box Elder School District, remained in critical condition at an Ogden hospital Monday, Perry Police Sgt. Scott Hancey said.
The Box Elder School District had counselors on hand at the high school, and Box Elder Middle School, where Nelson previously attended. Nelson served as a peer-support role model and was well-liked by students and staff.
“We have a lot of kids that are having to start off with a pretty tough day and a lot of unknowns, and so we just tried to work through that today,” said Box Elder High principal Gary Allen.
Nelson and Hardy were struck by a pickup truck while attempting to cross U.S. 89 near 3484 South at around 4 p.m. Sunday, Hancey said. Nelson was flown to a hospital in Salt Lake City where she died from her injuries Monday morning.
Hancey described the area where the crash occurred as a busy highway section surrounded by trees and orchards, but no crosswalks. He said it isn’t entirely uncommon for individuals to cross the highway stretch, especially in areas where fruit stands are on the side of the road.
The crash, which Utah Highway Patrol is assisting in, remains under investigation. Hancey added the driver of the pickup truck was not injured and has been cooperating with police.
“I don’t know why (the girls) crossed,” he said. “(It’s) unknown right now. It’s a pretty active case.”
Much like at the high school, Hancey said the news of the crash has been hard on the community of a little less than 5,000 in northern Utah.
“It’s such a close-knit city,” he said. “It really affects everybody. Everybody knows everybody out here. It’s one big family, so it’s taken its toll for sure.”