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A sophomore at Pine Ridge High School in Deltona died Monday morning after being involved in a head-on crash just outside the entrance of the school.

The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said Joshua Durner, 15, was heading eastbound on Howland Boulevard at 6:50 a.m. in a 2006 Hyundai Elantra, when he turned into the school, in the path of a westbound 2017 Nissan Pathfinder.

The Pathfinder hit Durner’s car, and a pickup truck behind the Pathfinder was unable to stop in time to avoid the crash.

The Sheriff’s Office said five other people, including two young children, have been treated for non-life-threatening injuries in the crash.

The driver of the Pathfinder was evaluated for a hip injury, while her passenger was admitted to Halifax Health Medical Center for monitoring of some injuries that “appeared to be non-life-threatening,” according to Sheriff’s Office spokesman Andrew Gant. Two children also inside the Pathfinder, ages 1 and 3, did not suffer any significant injuries.

The driver of the pickup truck suffered a minor back injury and was taken to AdventHealth Fish Memorial in Orange City.

“The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to investigate the crash, but no charges or traffic citations are pending at this time,” Gant said. “Durner was the sole occupant of his vehicle and did not appear to be wearing a seat belt.”

Volusia County Schools spokeswoman Kelly Schulz issued a statement about the accident.

“A sophomore and a student at Pine Ridge High School was killed this morning as a result of a traffic accident,” she said. “The district has provided grief counselors to assist the students and faculty of Pine Ridge High School cope with this tragic and untimely loss.”

Counselors will be on campus again Tuesday, Schulz said.

“Parents are encouraged to reach out to their students’ counselor if they feel their student may need additional support,” she said. “Our hearts and prayers go out to the family and to the entire Panther community as they cope with the news of his passing.”

— Anthony DeFeo


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