Boy, 14, dies in dirt bike accident in Plymouth
PLYMOUTH, Mass. (WHDH) -- Police have found the 40-year-old suspect involved in a fatal dirt bike accident that killed a 14-year-old boy Sunday.
James Ward, a student at Plymouth North High School, was out riding with his father and 11-year-old brother when he collided with another dirt bike near a cranberry bog at about 2 p.m. Sunday. Ward was a week away from his 15th birthday.
“He was really funny, always had a smile on his face and he just brightened everybody’s day just by being in the classroom or around you,” said Ward’s friend, Brett Cabral. “I was shocked to hear it.”
Plymouth police are investigating the accident. They said Ward collided head-on with another off-roader. Police said the man on another off-road vehicle promised to go get help, but he never came back. Police said the man was in his 40s and was also injured. They found him at a hospital.
“He left the scene and he hadn’t reported it. We located him,” said Botieri. “We have located who we believe was driving the other dirt bike -- I’m not even sure it was a dirt bike -- but the other vehicle off road and we’ve talked to them and we continue that investigation today,” said Botieri.
The teen's father was on an ATV and was following him at the time of the crash. The father tried to save his son’s life by performing CPR and asked the other man to go get help. That’s when the man left and didn’t return.
No one has been charged in the fatal accident.
“Like I said it’s still under investigation whether there’s going to be any charges pending or not. It’s a very complicated type of a case when you have off-road injuries,” said Botieri.
Plymouth school officials said grief counselors will be at Plymouth North on Monday.
“It’s particularly hard when it’s a young freshman, 14 years old, so much to offer the world and just, you know, his life just ended like that,” said Kathleen McSweeney, Plymouth North principal.
“Bright, bright young man. A kid who academically was gifted,” she said.
Many students wore green on Monday in honor of Ward as that was his favorite color.
“It’s tough losing a kid at that young of an age. He had such potential in his future because he was such a great kid. Always had a smile on his face, but i know he’s going to make people smile up in heaven,” said Cabral.
“He did boot camp this summer for the Navy Seals and that was the direction he was headed. He was just a terrific kid and we’re just so sorry for his loss,” said Kenny Knight, a family friend.
Knight told 7News that the Ward family considers it a freak accident and they aren’t putting a lot of blame on the 40-year-old driver. Because it was an off-road crash, different legal rules apply and no charges have yet been made.