Construction Begins On Memorial For Moore High Students Killed In February Hit-And-Run

Wednesday, December 9th 2020, 10:49 pm
By: Clayton Cummins

Over 10 months have passed since a man, allegedly driving under the influence behind the wheel of a speeding truck, crashed into a group of Moore High School cross-country runners. 

Countless watched in horror on February 3 when a truck slammed into the group of cross-country runners at nearly 80 mph. 

Police said over 50 students and staff witnessed the aftermath. 

Yuridia Martinez, Kolby Crum and Rachel Freeman died after being hit. Three other students were injured.  

Read: Students Final Steps: Remembering Lives Lost At Moore High

The suspect made it less than a mile away before he crashed, according to officers. Other students reportedly held him at the scene until investigators arrived. 

On November 24, construction began on a memorial that will honor the three students who were killed. The memorial will be in the same location they were killed, all too soon.  

“Just knowing Rachel and Kolby, you couldn’t slow them down,” said Jani Williams, the mother of Joseph White, who survived the crash. “They were definitely go-getters; I think their spirit is running and I don’t think they’ve slowed down at all. I think they’d be excited about this.” 

Read: ‘We Didn’t Have Time To React’: Survivor Remembers Deadly Moore Hit-And-Run

White had to learn how to walk again after being hit by the speeding truck.  

A memorial will be built for victims on the south side of the campus duck pond. 

Plaques on two columns being built at the athletics entrance will tell the story of what happened that horrific day. Another plaque will thank donors who helped make the memorial possible. 

Moore Public School officials are not releasing too many details about what the memorial will entail, saying those details will need to be experienced in person once construction is complete. 

“We are very excited, very pleased with the progress that is going on,” said Jeff Horn Assistant Superintendent at Moore Public Schools, who has taken on the project. “I just want it to be a special place for those families that suffered the loss here, for those kiddos and those families.” 

Memorial Park is scheduled to debut on the one-year anniversary of the accident. 

After Michael Freeman lost his daughter Rachel, whether it be one year or twenty, the pain remains forever real. 

“There is no question that the anniversary day is going to be hard,” said Freeman. “I think just having that memorial, just honoring them, will make that easier to handle.” 

The suspect accused of the crime, Max Townsend, faces numerous charges of murder and leaving the scene of a fatality accident. 

A Cleveland County judge ruled in July Townsend will stand trial for the hit-and-run deaths.  

A trial date has yet to be set.  

A day before Townsend crashed into the group of Moore High students, his son died in a car crash. 

Related Stories:

Parents Of Moore High School Senior Killed Remember, Honor Daughter

Moore Senior Laid To Rest After Tragic Hit-And-Run

Moore Community Mourns High School Sophomore Killed In Crash

Moore High School Student Kolby Crum Laid To Rest