June 24, 2013

Teen dies following accident

Hit by car on Beattyville Main Street

By Nita Johnson
Staff Writer

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — A Laurel teen died from injuries sustained when she was struck by a car in Beattyville Monday night.

Mackenzie Sams, 13, of London, died around 9 a.m. Wednesday at the University of Kentucky Children’s Hospital in Lexington, where she was taken following the accident on Main Street just after 11 p.m. on Monday.

The Beattyville Police Department responded to the scene where it is believed that Sams stepped off the sidewalk and into the path of a vehicle driven by 18-year-old Hailey Collins of Beattyville. The press release from the Beattyville Police Department stated that no criminal charges are expected in the case.

Sams, meanwhile, was listed in critical condition at the Lexington hospital until her death Wednesday morning.

Thomas Haynes, Sams’ stepfather, said the 13-year-old suffered extensive internal damage, including collapsed lungs. She also suffered a massive head trauma and skull fracture, in addition to broken bones in her chest area. Haynes reported on Tuesday evening that Sams had no brain activity and was on life support.

Sams had last attended South Laurel Middle School during the last six weeks of the 2012-2013 school year. Prior to that, she was a student at North Laurel Middle School where she attended from the sixth grade until her transfer to South Middle in March of this year.

North Laurel Middle School Principal Steve Morris said the news of the young girl’s death was very upsetting to his staff.

“She was a great kid and everyone liked her,” Morris said. “I told the teachers (of the death), some of whom had her in class last year, and they are all devastated. This is a real tragedy.”

Morris described Sams as a good student who was well thought of by her teachers.

“This is just absolutely awful,” he said. “It’s a great loss.”

Sams would have begun eighth grade at South Laurel Middle School this August.