JACKSON COUNTY, Ind. — Funeral arrangements are set for a local race car driver who was killed in a two-vehicle crash on Interstate 65 last Friday.
Visitation for 24-year-old Ashlea Albertson will be held at New Palestine United Methodist Church, located at 3560 S. 500 W in New Palestine beginning at 2 p.m. A Celebration of Life Service will follow at 6 p.m.
According to the obituary, guests are asked to wear racing shirts and cheery clothing because they believe “Ashlea would prefer a casual atmosphere.”
According to previous reports, Indiana State Police responded to a crash on I-65 in Jackson County that involved Albertson around 11:30 a.m. Investigators said Albertson was killed after a white 2018 GMC Terrain she was riding in collided with a black 2016 Chevrolet Malibu.
The Terrain, driven by a 31-year-old later identified as Jacob Kelly of Indianapolis, was traveling northbound on I-65 near mile marker 48 before it crashed. ISP’s initial investigation into the incident indicates the crash likely started when the Terrain and Malibu attempted to pass each other simultaneously.
Bystander video obtained by state police showed the Terrain and Malibu began to accelerate as they traveled in the left and right lanes, respectively. The Malibu, driven by 22-year-old Austin Cooper of Austin, Indiana, eventually attempted to change lanes in front of the Terrain.
After Cooper began to change lanes, Kelly lost control of his vehicle and spun. The two cars collided, and Kelly’s vehicle rolled, ejecting Albertson.
Kelly and Albertson were airlifted to the University of Louisville Hospital for treatment. Albertson was pronounced dead upon her arrival at the hospital. Kelly was being treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
Albertson’s teammates honored her at the Shelby County Fairgrounds on Saturday during an event she was previously slated to compete in.
In a statement released on Twitter, former NASCAR driver Tony Stewart expressed his hope that Ashlea Albertson’s story serves as a warning for interstate drivers against road rage.
“I hope that we can honor Ashlea by controlling what we can control on the highway. Losing her is a sobering reminder of how precious life is. Please join me in keeping her family and friends in your prayers,” Stewart said.