Mourners turn site of deadly crash into tribute for fallen friends

HANOVER COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A community is reeling this week after two of their own were killed in an accident over the weekend while four others remain hospitalized.

Lee-Davis High School senior Dylan Ballard and alum Elliot Hinton were both killed after the car they were riding in Saturday night lost control on Cold Harbor Road in Hanover County and struck a tree. Four others remain hospitalized in stable, but critical condition.

On Monday, the tragic scene where the heartbreaking crash took place had been transformed into a tribute to the victims.

A504B528CADA4BC0B7CB7025169B3615“It’s crazy how fast someone can be taken from you,” said Nathan Johnson, a friend of Ballard’s. “If there’s anyone in the world who lived a full life in 17 years, it’s Dylan Ballard.”

Added another heartbroken friend, Morgan Simmons, “It doesn’t feel real. It doesn’t feel real at all.”

“It doesn’t feel real. It doesn’t feel real at all.”

All of the students and mourners who gathered at the site of the crash Monday were all struggling to accept the loss of two friends.

“I just saw him four hours before it happened,” Simmons said while showing 8News Reporter Kristin Smith a video of Ballard enjoying himself hours before his life came to an abrupt end. “He was laughing, having a great time, biggest smile on his face as always.”

DC9D149DF12D4FC995C29CCB749FBECCSims said Ballard had just asked her to prom; she was planning to go tuxedo shopping with him this week.

Now, she’s made a promise to her date’s parents.

“I will live for him and I’m still taking your son to senior prom, and I will still make sure that he has the night of his life, because he was looking forward to it.”

Meanwhile, friends of Ballard are rallying around his family with a touching tribute.Dylan’s best friend and his sister designed t-shirts that read Ballard strong and they feature Dylan’s football jersey number on the back.

Dylan’s best friend and his sister designed t-shirts that read ‘Ballard Strong’ and they feature Dylan’s football jersey number on the back.

Capture“The point of all of this and all of us getting together is just to remember the life he lived,” says Johnson.

“He was special and he’s our angel and all we can say through god we’re going to get through this and we’re Ballard strong,” adds friend Ashley Snead.

They’re selling the t-shirts with all proceeds going to the Ballard family to help pay for funeral expenses.

For more information on how to purchase a t-shirt, contactAshley Snead: SweetNashDesigns@outlook.com.

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