Family reacts after Seymour girl, 16, is killed in White River crash

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A 16-year-old dies after a night out with her boyfriend.

Brooke Hawn is dead.  Wednesday, her car lost control, flipped over, knocked over small trees and then slid into the White River. What makes the story even worse, the man behind the wheel, her boyfriend, does not even have his license.

Tyler Ross said he was just out for a good time.  Now, his girlfriend is dead.

“It sucks,” said Tyler Ross. “I wish it was her that was still here and me that was gone.”

Ross, another friend and Brooke Hawn were in Hawn’s car.  Ross was behind the wheel.  Ross said he started goofing around then the car started fish-tailing. It flipped over on its top and then went into the White River.

“My window was down, I tried grabbing Brooke, and pulling her out with me, but I could not get her back out,” said Ross.  “I went to the bank and helped the other guy get out of the car, then I went back for Brooke.  I tried to reach her, but I could not, the water was so cold.”

Brooke Hawn died, less than two weeks before her “golden birthday.”  She would have been 17 on Dec. 17.

“It is devastating, your whole world stops in an instant when you get that call,” said Hawn’s aunt, Kim Ingalls.  “Part of me, I did not even want to go to the hospital because I felt like if I did not go, if I did not face it, it did not happen.”

Family and friends describe Brooke as a typical kid, bubbly and friendly.  She also had a rebellious side.  Kim Ingalls said Brooke was not allowed to hang out with the two guys who were in her car on Dec. 5.

“(Her mother) felt they were bad influences that (Brooke) should not be around,” said Ingalls. “She did not want her daughter with them, but like most typical teenagers you do not listen to your parents.”

Fox59 obtained an exclusive look at the coroner’s report. The coroner said Hawn suffered two pierced lungs, a chest injury and a head injury.  The coroner also said the 16-year-old had no water in her lungs.

“One bad decision took her life,” said Ingalls.

Ross has been charged with reckless homicide. He said Brooke was a great girl and she made him happy.  His alleged actions have brought Hawn’s family nothing but tears.

“I am really sorry, I never meant for anything like this to ever happen,” said Ross.  “I loved her and if there is anything I can do, I will do whatever it takes.”

“There is nothing he could do or say to ease the pain, the anger, the bitterness,” said Ingalls.  “I think there is a lot more that we do not know.”