STATESVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Six of the victims killed in a church bus crash in Tennessee last week were remembered during a service at their church in Statesville.
Front Street Baptist Church pastor Tim Stutts had trouble keeping his composure as he spoke during Sunday morning’s service.
The six victims were among 17 members of the church’s Young at Heart Seniors Ministry who were returning from a religious gathering last Wednesday when the front tire of the bus failed on Interstate 40 near Knoxville, Tenn.
The bus ran across the median, hitting a sports utility vehicle and a tractor trailer rig. One person in each of those vehicles died.
Deacon Chairman Scott Mitcham said the congregation has many unanswered questions.
“But we’ve got to keep our chins up, and we want to rely upon the Lord,” Mitcham said.
The victims were Cloyce Matheny 95; Brenda Smith, 69; Marsha McLelland, 62; John Wright, 73; and Randy and Barbara Morrison, both 66.
The Tennessee Highway Patrol said Randy Morrison was driving the bus.
Stutts urged members to comfort each other and trust God.
“The valleys are pretty low,” he said. “But God has promised to never leave us.”
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