Third teen dies from crash with MercyMe tour bus

Published 13 August 2009
The pregnant teen driver whose car collided with the tour bus carrying Christian rock band MercyMe died Tuesday after having been in critical condition since the crash three days earlier.

Police in Fort Wayne, Ind., said 18-year-old Kara Klinker, who was driving with two other teens early Saturday, died from her injuries at 2 pm Tuesday after having emerged from the crash as the sole survivor.

The passengers – 19-year-old Dario Boutte and 17-year-old Barbara Schmucker – had been pronounced dead at the scene and Klinker’s 35-week-old unborn baby was pronounced stillborn shortly after arrival at the local hospital.

In a statement released Wednesday by MercyMe, the popular award-winning band said their hearts “continue to break for these families and all those who knew them”.

“We continue to pray and ask your prayers for everyone affected by this accident, that God would bring healing, comfort, peace and understanding at a time when they are desperately needed,” the six-man team added.

According to reports, MercyMe’s tour bus was driving northbound around 1:15 a.m. and passing through an intersection on a green light when Klinker, who was driving southbound at a high speed, made an abrupt left directly in front of it, colliding with the front end of the bus.

The crash, which resulted in no serious injuries for those on the bus, took place just hours after MercyMe performed during a concert in downtown Fort Wayne.

As a result of the crash, the notably shaken band postponed their scheduled appearance in St Louis Saturday and did not resume touring until Monday night.

A memorial service for 17-year-old Barbara Schmucker, meanwhile, was set for Wednesday at the Hicksville Mennonite Church in Hicksville, Ohio.

It was not immediately known if a funeral date had been set yet for Boutte, Barbara’s boyfriend.

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