Officials encourage ATV safety to prevent death and accidents
POSTED: Tuesday, May 27, 2014 - 6:02pm
UPDATED: Friday, May 30, 2014 - 12:08pm
CHEROKEE COUNTY, TEXAS (KETK) — A Rusk teenager was killed over the weekend in an ATV accident, it happened on an Anderson County Road.
Officials say, ATV safety is crucial. "Families all over the state of Texas use this for hunting, farming and for recreation and fun, it is an absolute fun device when used appropriately with the proper safety equipment and proper area," said Captain Game Warden, Quint Balkcom.
On Tuesday we spoke the grandparents of the teen who was killed in the ATV accident. "You've done everything you can from preventing your kid from getting a head injury or something from an ATV, and then 'hey mom I'm going to run down the road with some friends, I'll be right back', and their gone," said Donna Rossa, grandmother of Keith Padgett.
The Padgett and Rossa family of Cherokee County are going through a painful loss. "Our Grandson Keith Padgett was on a 4-wheeler with some friends going a short distance down a road they've traveled many times," said Rossa.
15-year-old Keith Padgett was a back-seat passenger of an ATV that veered off County Road 391 in Anderson County. We're told they were trying to avoid getting hit from a pickup.
"An in result our grandson was thrown from the vehicle into a ditch and running into a log and he died on impact," said Rossa.
Game Warden Quint Balkcom tell us we need to get ATV accident numbers down. He says no matter what people need to keep ATV safety in mind, whether you're a driver or passenger of an off-road vehicle it can be dangerous. Always wear protective gear including helmets, eye protection and appropriate footwear. Balkcom says highway motorists and ATV riders need to follow laws to prevent a tragedy like this from happening again.
Padgett's Funeral will be held on Wednesday at First Baptist Church in Rusk, and that's where Keith will remembered as a son, brother, grandson, friend and a remarkable football player at Rusk High School.