Belton teen killed in car wreck provides cautionary tale for those he left behind

BELTON, Mo. - Students at Belton High School are mourning the loss of one of their own.

Matthew Carr, 17 years old, was a senior at Belton High School.

Tuesday morning, Carr's short life ended after the car he was driving crashed into a tree just after 4:30 a.m.

One neighbor told KSHB the driver's side was almost completely non-existent.

"The driver's side was crushed in. The car looked like it got turned into a horseshoe from that point," Pete Wing described. He instantly recognized the car wrapped around his neighbor's tree, and said he feels for Carr's family.

Students at Belton High share that same sadness and shock.

Carr attended night school this year. His friends call him a jokester and all around fun guy to be around.

"I thought they were just messing around, but then I heard it was serious. It was all quiet and stuff," said sophomore Brandon Thompson. He and Carr had been friends since the second grade.

"He was a funny, crazy person and no one should ever be forgotten," Thompson said.

That's exactly why students at Belton High School worked quickly to plan a candlelight vigil Tuesday night. About 75 students showed up to share prayers and memories.

"It's really hard, honestly, to think that's how someone died. It's sad really to think someone could be taken away by that," said sophomore Mandi Peters.

Mandi and Brandon agreed that the student body will take away a great lesson from Carr's death: To always wear seatbelts no matter what.

Extra counselors were on hand Tuesday for grieving students.

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