Teen dies in crash

Published 9:17 am Thursday, February 4, 2016


That’s the adjective that keeps coming up to describe Seth Ring, the Davie High senior who died following a traffic accident Saturday night.

Elizabeth Gordon, a guidance counselor at Davie, said she went into one of Seth’s classrooms Monday morning and asked students to describe Seth, and the word kind was used often.

And then Austin King, a lifelong friend of Seth’s, described Seth this way.

“Seth was one of the nicest people I knew. He was beyond humble. If you needed something done or asked him for a favor, he was right there to help you do it. I don’t remember a time when Seth intentionally said or did something to intentionally hurt someone.”

Ring, 17, was a front seat passenger in a 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee driven by his niece, Kelsey Bradshaw, also 17. According to NC Highway Patrol Trooper A.C. Ward, Bradshaw was driving the car on Angell Road about 7:40 p.m. on Jan. 30 and failed to stop at the stop sign at US 601, near the William R. Davie fire department. Her car collided with a Hyundai Sonata driven by Derek Scherer, 46, of Mocksville.

Ward said the Cherokee slid sideways toward a ditch and was close to flipping over but was stopped by a telephone pole. Tire marks could be seen 10 feet up the pole.

Ring was ejected somewhere between the ditch and pole, Ward said. He was not wearing a seat belt. He would have turned 18 five days after the accident.

Another passenger in the car, Laremie Reist, 16, of Olin, was riding in the backseat and was also not wearing a seat belt, for which she was cited. Ward said after the accident, Reist complained of pain in her wrist, back and knee, and Bradshaw, who lives in Winston-Salem, said her right leg hurt. Bradshaw was wearing a seat belt.

The Jeep was estimated to be traveling at 45 to 50 mph at impact, and the Hyundai was traveling between 50 and 55 mph. The speed limit there is 55 mph.

Bradshaw was charged with failure to stop at a stop sign and misdemeanor death by motor vehicle. She had no prior citations or accidents on her driving record, Ward said.

Ring survived the crash but died a short time later at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. Ward said the teens left Ring’s father’s home and were on their way to his mother’s home when the accident happened.

Scherer’s wife, Virginia, 51, and son, Ian, 8, were transported to Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center after the crash but only Derek stayed the night at the hospital. Ward said he checked on them Monday and they were all fine, just sore.

Both vehicles were totaled.

A third vehicle, a 1999 Honda Accord driven by Susan M. Barnhardt, 65, of Harmony, was hit by the Hyundai but there was minimal damage to the Accord, Ward said. There was one passenger in that car, but neither he nor Barnhardt was injured and both refused medical attention at the scene.

Ward said he was told someone who lives at the home on the corner where the wreck happened came out to help, but stepped down into a ditch and broke her arm.

The accident underlines the need for the constant and consistent use of a seatbelt in a moving vehicle.

“He (Seth) would have still been in the vehicle if he’d been wearing his seat belt, probably with some injuries but probably in a lot better shape,” Ward said. “Every fatality I’ve done, I have yet to go to one where the person was deceased and was wearing their seat belt.”

Gordon said she hopes if any good can come of this, it’s that people will remember to buckle up. She spoke with Ring the day before his death, when he went into the guidance area to pick up a copy of his latest test scores.

“I told him I was proud of him because he’d gotten all his credits, and he said he was going to somehow get through his English class and graduate in June.”

She said he had applied to a college in Texas that would further his interest in rodeo, because he was a bull rider, and he had also applied to a local community college. One of his classmates offered the adjective brave, because they said anyone who would ride a bull has to be brave.

Gordon knew Ring to always be respectful.

“It was always ‘Yes m’am, no m’am,’ and he was always responsible, thoughtful of others, had a positive attitude, and was kind to everyone. One girl shared that she was with Seth in first grade and then in senior English, and even though they really didn’t have any classes together for all the years in between, Seth would still speak to her in the hall. The students told me he was not cliquish and treated everyone the same, and that says a lot, especially in high school.”

Seth’s friend, Austin, has memories of their friendship that will stay with him, including when Seth taught Austin how to ride a horse when he was 9-years-old, and how, when Austin spent the night at Seth’s, they would wake up and go out to feed the horses and chickens first thing in the morning.

“There are so many great things I can say about Seth, but there isn’t enough time to tell fully what an amazing guy Seth was. He will forever have a place in my mind and heart and will be forever missed.”