Unicoi County teen dies after truck crashes on Buffalo Mountain

Ashlie Padgett (Source: Facebook)

WASHINGTON COUNTY, TN (WJHL) – A community is mourning the loss of a Unicoi County teen who was killed as a result of a single-vehicle crash.

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office confirms the crash happened Friday morning on Fire Tower Road on Buffalo Mountain. Ashlie Padgett, 18, died Monday evening after succumbing to injuries related to the crash.

Padgett was flown to a nearby hospital at the time of the crash. She was one of two passengers in a pickup truck driven by a 16-year-old.

WCSO reports, the driver lost control of the truck while going down a steep grade road and struck a tree. The driver and other passenger were taken to the hospital but have been treated and released.

Padgett, a high school softball player, was a recent graduate of Unicoi County High School, according to the school’s softball coach.

In her element at bat, family members friends and her coach say 18-year-old Ashlie Padgett was a leader. Relentless competitor— who was a joy to everyone she met.

We spoke to her uncle Johnny Padgett

“She loved everything, she loved life in general. she will be sorely missed,” Johnny Padgett said.

A recent Unicoi High school graduate family members say Ashlie Padgett had planned to study dental hygiene at Northeast State. She had recently been named best female athlete in the Unicoi County School System.

Unicoi County director of schools John English was principal when Ashlie was in middle school.

“Her smile, I mean that is the one thing that, there are so many things that stand out about her but she had a smile that was absolutely infectious,” John English said.

Ashlie’s spirit was so infectious that the all star athlete left a remarkable impression on the community owners of local businesses like the corner grill held a fundraiser for her family.

Donating a portion of Tuesday’s earning for funeral expenses. While family members and friends continue to cope with Johnny Padgett has these words for all of Ashlie’s young friends.

“Cherish every moment, cherish every moment you have as a youngster, cherish every moment with your family, cherish every moment that you have,” Johnny Padgett said.

Friends and family are working to plan a vigil to honor Ashlie Padgett.

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