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16-year-old Hickman High School student dies in crash

Friday, April 27, 2007 | 4:00 p.m. CDT; updated 7:13 a.m. CDT, Saturday, July 19, 2008

Phillip Atchley, a 16-year-old Hickman High School student was killed Thursday when his car was struck by an SUV at 173 N. Route O, west of Columbia, the Missouri State Highway police said. Atchley was a resident of Rocheport.

The driver of the SUV was identified as Teylor Seever, 19 also of Rocheport. He was admitted to Boone Hospital and later released.

Atchley lost control of his Honda Civic as he came over the crest of a hill and slid into the oncoming traffic lane where he was struck by Seever’s Jeep Grand Cherokee, according to a news release from the Boone County Fire Protection District.

Atchley’s family said Friday that they were not ready to speak to the media.

At Hickman High School on Friday morning, people in the hallway “have been crying all day,” said David King, a senior.

Friends and staff remembered Atchley as fun to be around.

“(Atchley) was very likeable, always enjoyed having fun,” said Doug Mirts, assistant principal and athletic director at Hickman High School. “He was a gregarious, fun-loving good kid.”

Atchley, a sophomore, loved soccer and played for the junior varsity team.

“He was energetic, and he was never in a bad mood, always smiling,” said Jay Vomund, a senior who was in a strength training class with Atchley.

Atchley had many friends, Mirts said. “That’s indicative of the number of kids who are having to deal with this today,” Mirts said.

Some students at Hickman are expressing their sympathy through a group on Facebook. More than 50 people had joined a group called in his memory by Friday afternoon.

Atchley’s cousin, Suzanne Lammers, wrote about him in a posting on the Web site. “He was laid back and quick to laugh,” she said. “Our family won’t be the same without him.”

Former classmate Lauren Bianco wrote that Atchley sat behind her in Spanish class.

“I couldn’t have survived that class without him,” she said.


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