School’s out, graduations have come and gone, and summer is finally here. Scores of teens, many of whom have just graduated from high school, are taking to Dallas-area roadways with their friends for some fun before they enter college or the work force. Unfortunately, things don’t always work out as planned.
Cody Hensley attended McKinney North High School and Steven Chaney attended Princeton High School, and should have graduated this spring. According to NBCDFW.com, these two 17-year-olds got into a car along with five of their friends in early November 2013. The small Mazda only had five seatbelts and wasn’t really built to accommodate seven passengers. This already unsafe decision turned deadly when 19-year-old driver Joshua Bartlett somehow rolled the car, seriously injuring himself and four of his passengers. Cody Hensley and Steven Chaney were killed. Witnesses said that the car appeared to have been speeding before it rolled. It is unknown whether any of the teens in the car were wearing seatbelts.
If your teens are out enjoying time with friends and family this summer, do your best to instill in them that they should always wear seatbelts—no matter how short a car ride may be—and to avoid putting themselves in dangerous situations at any time. Of course, “kids will be kids.” Cody Hensley and Steven Chaney were kids, and rather than celebrating their high school graduations, their families and friends have mourned their loss through the winter and spring holiday into what would have been their “graduation summer.”