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Tragedy grips students at A&M-Commerce

By James Bright
On April 9, 2010

A student was killed last night and three others were injured following two separate traffic accidents on U.S. Highway 24/50.

According to a press release from A&M-Commerce, honors college student 19-year-old Malorie Bullock was killed after being struck by a white pickup truck while riding on the back of a motorcycle with her 19-year-old boyfriend, Taner Burnett, around 10 p.m.

"The entire A&M-Commerce family is devastated by the loss of one of its own," President Dan Jones said. "We extend our heartfelt condolences to the family of Malorie Bullock, one of our best and brightest, at this saddest of times."

Sophomore Shelbie Bryan said a prayer meeting will be held at 8 p.m. tonight in front of the Sigma Chi House. She said there will be candles available, but it is still a good idea for attendees to bring their own.

"I encourage people to bring candles, so that we may be a light for Taner and his family during this dark time," she said.

The accident occurred in Campbell, Community Resource Officer for the Commerce Police Department Alex Suarez said. The truck fled the scene after striking Burnett and Bullock, and as of 1 a.m. this morning, had not been found, according to Suarez.

The release said Burnett suffered some broken bones, and was listed in serious condition at Parkland Hospital in Dallas.

The other accident occurred at approximately 9:30 p.m. A male and female student were struck and injured by a vehicle while crossing U.S. Highway 50.

Suarez said the students were walking toward campus from Smith Hall when they were struck by an SUV while crossing a crosswalk. The driver continued northbound, but was unsure what she had hit, and returned to the scene of the accident.

The female was transported to Parkland Hospital where she is listed in serious, but stable condition. The male, who landed in the median after being struck, is said to have non-life threatening injuries, and was taken to Greenville Presbyterian Hospital.

Neither of the students' names have been released.

Suarez said the initial investigation has shown the crosswalk system, which emits a series of flashing yellow lights, was not activated.

"We need to let students know they have the right-of-way, but that does not mean vehicles can see them," he said.

More on this story as it develops.

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