12-year-old dies after dirt bike wreck
A 12-year-old boy died this afternoon after being critically injured Tuesday when the flag he was wearing as a cape became entangled in the rear wheel of a dirt bike he was riding in southern Rowan County.
Trent Brown Jr. was riding the bike on property in the 10000 block of Old Beatty Ford Road, near its intersection with Organ Church Road, when the accident happened.
The accident was reported around 5:45 p.m. Neighbors told investigators they saw Trent riding the motorcycle with a full-size flag tied around his neck like a cape and trailing behind him. The next time the neighbors looked, Trent was on the ground with the bike on top of him, Rowan County Sheriff’s Capt. John Sifford said.
A driver passing by on Old Beatty Ford had seen the accident and stopped. The driver and a neighbor lifted the bike off the boy.
“The flag was still around his neck,” Sifford said. “And apparently the other end that had been trailing off must have gotten caught in the back wheel. As you can imagine, it wound up tight and pulled him back off the motorcycle and pulled the bike on top of him.”
They cut the flag from around Trent’s neck as emergency personnel arrived, Sifford said. First firefighters from Rockwell Rural Fire Department then medical responders with Rowan County EMS performed CPR, Sifford said.
The boy was taken to Carolinas Medical Center-NorthEast in Concord, then to Levine Children’s Hospital at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte. A relative said he was taken off life support around 3 p.m. this afternoon, and the Charlotte hospital confirmed his death.
Trent lives with his grandparents, Andrew and Sara Brown, who own Brown’s Why Knot Upholstery on Old Beatty Ford Road.
He is a sixth-grader at Erwin Middle School. The Browns are longtime members of Organ Lutheran Church.
“He’s been going here since he was a baby,” church secretary Connie Griffin said of Trent Brown Jr. “It’s pretty devastating.”