Winamac student ID'd in fatal bus crash

Jim Bottorff | WTCAAn Eastern Pulaski School Corp. school bus was involved in a crash on U.S. 31 between Plymouth and Argos on Wednesday morning.

MARSHALL COUNTY — The identity of a teenage boy killed in a fatal school bus crash Wednesday morning was recently released, while police are still investigating what caused the deadly incident between an Eastern Pulaski Community School Corp. school bus and a Freightliner truck.

According to a press release, the school bus was carrying 38 students and three chaperones from Winamac Community Middle School on a field trip to see a Christmas musical in Warsaw, when it stopped along a set of railroad tracks on northbound U.S. 31 in Marshall County around 9:15 a.m. Wednesday.

Per federal law, it's required that all school buses must stop at railroad crossings, Indiana State Police Sgt. Ted Bohner said.

As the bus began to accelerate, authorities stated, it was struck from behind by the truck, which was driven by Tylor Perry, 26, Camby.

The impact of the collision killed 8th grader Owen Abbott, 13, who was sitting in the left rear of the school bus, police said. Another student, Zane Bell, 14, was airlifted from the scene and taken to Memorial Hospital in South Bend, the release stated, with non-life threatening injuries.

Other students on the bus were taken to Saint Joseph Regional Medical Center in Plymouth, where they were checked out and reunited with their families, police said.

According to Bohner, weather is not believed to be a factor in the crash, and toxicology results are pending for both Perry and the school bus driver, as required by law.

On Wednesday, a GoFundMe account was set up in memory of Abbott, with proceeds going directly to the boy's family to help pay for expenses. That page can be accessed at https://www.gofundme.com/expenses-for-owen-abbott

Along with ISP, Marshall County Sheriff's Department, Marshal County Coroner's Office, Med Flight, Argos Police Department, INDOT, Plymouth EMS and Plymouth Fire Department assisted at the scene.

Reach Kim Dunlap at kim.dunlap@pharostribune.com or 574-732-5150.

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