Dansville Strong memorial site honors teens
By Jasmine Willis
BURNS — Kindness and compassion are the themes best described within the community in the days that have passed since the recent tragic car accident that claimed four innocent lives.
The outpouring of support from the business owners, students, school, parents, friends, and community has touched many hearts.
Dansville Central kicked off the entire tribute with a counseling session at the school the following day of the accident. That same day the community gathered for a powerful tribute of love and kindness at Babcock Park.
The Dansville Strong group page has been buzzing with ideas of how to support the families affected by these terrible tragedies. It has created a safe place for community members to grieve, share ideas and memories, figure out fundraising activities, and create ways to honor the four teens who lost their lives as well as the young adult in a separate accident.
When tragedy like this hits a small community, it creates a dark cloud of sorrow and pain that echoes, but with this group page it has created a shelter in that storm. It has given the parents a way to express their gratitude for the kindness and compassion, as well as share memories of their children who passed much too soon.
Dansville Strong is a place to find all the information on where to donate, how to share support, and what to do to honor the lives of these teens.
In the past three days this group page has done so much in terms of community support. They have created an avenue to share the Go Fund Me pages for all the teens. It is a place to find all of the funeral information for the teens. It has created a gathering for all those who want to do something to help. There has been a welcome home for Kelsi Bird, who was the sole survivor of the accident. There have been several ideas for Dansville Strong bracelets and T-shirts that could help with fundraising. There have been several ideas of how everyone can do their part in coming together for these families and students who mourn.
Perhaps what really is powerful is the community gathering to create a memorial at the crash site. There are large wooden crosses with the names, photos, birth, and death dates of each teen. Flowers, stuffed animals, candles, and other memorabilia can be found lying at the site. A small white cross with Rev. 22:17 and John 3:16 has flowers all around it. A small white cross with RIP Potato Tree Becca, Forever in our hearts Justin Carpenter, I love you, and RIP Justin, Becca, Kyrstin, Ambra, Fly High! A white heart with a dog stuffed animal, little angel, and pink flowers reads, “RIP forever in our hearts July 27, 2019~ Kyrstin, Becca, Ambra, and Justin. Four candles with Jesus on them saying Fly High in black marker is at the site.
This is the community’s way of saying goodbye to Kyrstin Wolfanger, Rebecca Earner, Justin Carpenter, and Ambra Eddleton.
Some following things are coming up for those who wish to pay their respects. A community prayer service is being held at the Dansville Presbyterian Church on July 31 at 7:30 p.m. This is hope and healing for those who mourn.
Kyrstin Wolfanger Celebration of Life is at the Jackson Hose on Aug. 2 at 1 p.m with the community invited.
Ambra Eddleton Celebration of Life is at the River of Life Community Church at 7700 Woodman Road in Henrico Virginia on Aug. 3 at 3 p.m.
Rebecca Earner Celebration of Life is at the Union Hose on Aug. 1 at 11:30 a.m. and the community is welcome.
Justin Carpenter Funeral Service will be at the Dansville Foursquare Church on Aug. 2 at 7 p.m. and the community is welcome.
There will be Dansville Strong bracelets available this week for purchase at several locations. The funds will be shared with all the families. Check back with the group page for all the locations.
If you would like to donate, share memories, or comfort those who are mourning visit the Dansville Strong page and leave your thoughts with them.
You can learn more about the campaign for Kyrstin Wolfganger here: https://www.gofundme.com/funeral-expenses-for-kyrstin-wolfanger
You can learn more about the campaign for Justin David Carpenter here: https://www.gofundme.com/funeral-expenses-for-justin-david-carpenter
You can learn more about the campaign for Ambra Eddleton here:
You can learn more about the campaign for Becca Earner here: