Services are Wednesday for teen

Published 8:34 am Tuesday, May 13, 2014

EURE – A 13-year-old Northeast Academy student killed on Thursday in an auto accident in Northampton County will be laid to rest here Wednesday.

Thomas Watson Piper of Doolittle Mill Road, Conway, lived and attended school in Gates County prior to moving with his mother to Northampton County. He tragically lost his life when the pick-up truck he was a passenger was involved in a collision on Doolittle Mill Road. That accident sent the driver of the truck, Randy Deloatch, and his son, Cole, to Vidant Medical Center in Greenville. Mr. Deloatch was treated and released while Cole remains hospitalized.

Piper, a seventh grader at Northeast, will be buried in the Eure Christian Church Cemetery following an 11 a.m. graveside service.

Three area ministers were on hand Friday to counsel faculty and staff at Northeast Academy, according to NEA Headmaster Russell Leake.

“These were two young men so full of life and enjoyed life to the fullest,” said Leake. “We were just tickled to have them at school with us.

“It’s been a long day,” the headmaster added. “We’ve all hugged and laughed and cried and prayed together.  This is just something you never want to deal with when you deal with kids.”

Leake went on to comment on the close ties that bind everyone at Northeast.

“Our school is small,” Leake said. “Everybody knows everybody and we’re all like family.  In times of crisis we put aside our differences and do what’s necessary to assist one another.”

Piper is survived by his mother, Stacey Askew of Conway, his father, Aaron Piper of Sunbury; a sister, Addie of Conway; and step-sisters, Allison and Nikki of Sunbury.

The accident report filed by North Carolina Highway Patrol Trooper Chad Wheeler indicated that Deloatch was operating his truck on Doolittle Mill Road when it approached a tractor traveling west on the road pulling a large farm implement.

Meanwhile, a second vehicle, a truck driven by Kyle Glisson, was following behind the tractor, also traveling west.

Wheeler’s report showed that Glisson’s vehicle attempted to make a left turn at which time it collided nearly head-on with Deloatch’s truck.

Glisson suffered minor injuries after the impact and was treated on the scene.

Wheeler said he has initially charged Glisson with failure to see safe movement before making a left-hand turn, a driver’s license violation, and a seat-belt violation.

Deloatch was charged with failure to restrain a child of less than the age of 16 in a vehicle.

Wheeler said he will be consulting with the Judicial District 6B District Attorney’s Office to determine what further charges will be filed against Glisson in light of the child’s death.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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