Mother of Hanover crash victim speaks at prayer service

HANOVER COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) —  The mother of one of the victims in the deadly car crash involving Lee-Davis students and an alum spoke Saturday at a community prayer service.

Donna Ballard, Dylan Ballard’s mother, spoke during a community prayer service called “Hanover Strong” at the Mechanicsville Christian Center off Shady Grove Road.

“God blessed us for 17 years with Dylan,” Donna Ballard said. “It could have been more, it could have been less, but we are so thankful for what God has given us.”

Dylan Ballard, 17, and Elliot Hinton, 22, were killed after the car they were in ran off the road and hit a tree.  Investigators say alcohol may have been a factor. The crash happened on April 23, 2016, off of Cold Harbor Road.

“Michael Goodman, event organizer, says he come up with the idea of after the viewing for Dylan Ballard, where thousands of kids come to pay their respects.

So many kids came here broken hearted and they saw devastation and they left feeling that way,” Goodman said.

Goodman says the event was set up to help kids and other people in Hanover County find their faith and heal.

“Just to give kids hope tonight and to let them know that they’re not alone in the way that they feel and that this community stands behind them and with them,” Goodman explained.

Last week 8News spoke to Dylan’s brother who created a video, since the accident, warning high schoolers of the dangers of drinking and driving.

At the service, Donna announced the creation of “Never Too Late to Call.” Donna and her husband say they will make themselves available for all Hanover County students who need a ride. “Never Too Late to Call”, comes from the desire to do something with Dylan’s number in football, number 28.

“At any time, any day, anywhere you are, if you need a ride for whatever the reason is, call us, there will be no questions asked,” said Donna.

“If we could save one family from going through what we have gone through, then we have accomplished our mission,” said Donna.

Donna thanked the hundreds who came out.

“Thank you again for taking the time away from your own lives to create the beginning of “Hanover Strong’, god bless you all,” said Donna.

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