RUSSELLVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – A mother and son were killed in a crash on AL-13 near Russellville Wednesday night, according to the Russellville Police Department (RPD).
RPD Chief Chris Hargett said 34-year-old Jennifer Lacelle Fretwell and 11-year-old Austin Jase Fretwell both died at the scene.
Chief Hargett said two other children were in Fretwell’s vehicle at the time of the crash, they were both related to Fretwell. According to Hargett, the two were flown to Children’s of Alabama but were in stable condition as of this publication.
The driver of the other vehicle, a 65-year-old woman, was taken to Helen Keller Hospital in Sheffield before she was transported to Huntsville Hospital, Hargett said.
On Thursday night, Russellville Elementary held a Prayer Vigil at 6 p.m. at the school to honor the memory of Jase and his mother, Jennifer, and to pray for their family and loved ones. Over the next week, the elementary school said they will also be collecting donations to help cover the cost of funeral expenses in a box located in the front office.
According to a GoFundMe shared by the school, Jase was a 5th grader at Russellville Elementary. The GoFundMe page says Jase’s older brother Noah, a 10th grader at Russellville High, was airlifted to Birmingham and is doing much better.
At the vigil, two of Jase’s classmates tell us he was known for going to great lengths to make others laugh.
“One of my first appearances of him is just thinking, oh he’s about to make everyone laugh, and just the way he carries a smile on his face makes me feel good for the rest of the day,” classmate Axel Wells said.
“It was like yesterday he’s always asking me to go to the snack store with him,” Masen Willingham said.
The organizer of the GoFundMe says Jase’s father is their nephew and they’ve put up the donation page to help raise funds needed to help with funeral expenses. The link to donate to the family can be found here.
Russellville Police is still investigating the cause of the crash.