Columbus boy, 7, killed after moped crash; father critically hurt

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Memorial set up at the scene of the moped crash.

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COLUMBUS (Oct. 29, 2014) – A 7-year-old Columbus boy died after a crash involving a moped and an SUV.

According to the Columbus Police Department, Skyler Bruner, 7, was riding the moped with his father, Darrell Bruner, 29, when they were involved in a crash on U.S. 31 near Shady Lane around 7:45 p.m. Tuesday.

Police said the driver of a Jeep Cherokee, Justin Lucas, 26, Columbus, didn’t see the moped and hit it. A witness told officers that the moped’s rear light was dimly lit and hard to see.

A medical helicopter flew Skyler Bruner to Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health in Indianapolis. He died from his injuries late Tuesday night.

Darrell Bruner went to Columbus Regional Hospital with a head injury and was later flown to IU Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, where he was placed in intensive care.

It’s not clear if either was wearing a helmet, but the law requires individuals under the age of 18 to wear helmets when riding mopeds or scooters.

Sgt. Matt Harris with the Columbus Police Department said, “A helmet was recovered at the scene. Our accident reconstructionists are still determining whether the helmet was worn during the crash or if it was just there at the scene.”

Officials from the Bartholomew County Consolidated School Corporation said counselors would be available to help students and staff cope with Skyler’s death.

“Those families that have a child in Skyler’s class will probably be getting a call today,” said Staff and Student Assistance Coordinator Larry Perkinson. “Then as we come in tomorrow it’s about talking to his class, seeing if there are other groups that we need to address, and then having counseling available.”

Perkinson said Skyler, now a second grader, was a student in the district for three years.

“He’s been with our school for three years – two years at Taylorsville Elementary. It was his first year here at (Lillian) Schmidt. He has a lot of school family who cares about him and knows about him.”

The crash remains under investigation, but police say it does not appear speed was a factor.

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