Family pushes for crosswalk at Currituck school after car hits, kills 11-year-old student

North Carolina

CURRITUCK Co., N.C. (WAVY) — A Barco family is mourning the death of their 11-year-old daughter after North Carolina Highway Patrol says she was hit and killed by an impaired driver on August 30.

On Saturday, September 8, Julie Randel, 11, passed away as a result of injuries caused by the accident.

According to police, Julie Randel was crossing US 158 in front of Currituck County Middle School with her brother. Police say they had successfully crossed the street but Julie was hit when she ran back into the road after she realized she dropped something.

Police say the driver, Daniel Deweese, stayed on the scene following the incident. They add that it was determined that alcohol was a factor in the crash.

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Following Randel’s death, Deweese was charged with felony death by vehicle and 2nd-degree murder in connection to the incident.

The family gathered at Currituck County Middle School for Julie’s celebration of life on Sunday, September 19.

One by one, her friends took the stage in the school’s auditorium to share stories about Julie’s life. One that Rachel Lovelace, a witness to the accident, says was cut too short.

“Us as parents,” said Rachel Lovelace, a family friend. “It easily could have been one of our kids as well.”

That thought and Julie’s story have been the driving force for a petition that asks for a crosswalk in front of the school.

For some students who walk to school, they have to cross US 158, a five-lane highway. The petition pushes for safety measures to be put in place to prevent another accident.

“If there’s a crosswalk, a crossing guard, they can stop traffic for those children,” said Lovelace. “It’s a big highway and people speed down it all the time.”

At the time of the accident, Rachel says the family didn’t have insurance to help cover hospital bills.

“The family shouldn’t be left to pay for another person’s negligence,” Lovelace said to 10 On Your Side.

The family is asking for privacy at this time but said those who want to show their support can send money to CashApp account $hopeforjulie.

“Fight for Julie T-shirts” are also making their way through Currituck County. To order a shirt, contact Ariel Sawyer at ariel.sawyer@aol.com or Rachel Lovelace at rachel.m.lovelace@gmail.com.

Most of the profits will go to Julie’s family to help cover the week’s long hospital stay and funeral expenses.

10 On Your Side reached out to the North Carolina Department of Transportation to see if they were aware of the petition. They released this statement…

“Our hearts and prayers go out to the family of the young girl killed in this tragedy. As safety is our No. 1 priority, we have launched an investigation into this crash to determine if there is opportunity to improve the safety for all road users. We will make our preliminary findings available after we conclude our investigation. We look forward to working with Currituck Schools if they wish to pursue the request in the petition.”

Jamie Kritzer, Assistant Director of Communications for N.C. Department of Transportation

We are going to continue sharing updates on Julie’s story and NCDOT’s investigation.

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