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Bethel Rallies Behind Grieving Family After College Student's Death

The Bethel community is rallying to support the family of Casey Ellis, 21, who was killed in a bicycle accident last week in Texas.
The Bethel community is rallying to support the family of Casey Ellis, 21, who was killed in a bicycle accident last week in Texas. Photo Credit: Facebook

BETHEL, Conn. -- The Bethel community is rallying behind the family of a young woman who was killed in a tragic bicycle accident last week in Texas.

Casey Ellis, 21, a 2013 graduate of Bethel High School, died last week in an accident in Abilene, Texas. She was a student at Abilene Christian College.

According to a post on Facebook, people can help the family by transferring hotel rewards from Hilton and Holiday Inn to help the family. Residents can also contribute via a PayPal gift to PayPal donations will help with the cost of food, gasoline and a memorial service.

The family left for Texas on Sunday in a rental truck to pick up Casey’s belongings. People can help with hotel rewards from Hilton Honors by transferring points to #503879625 and Holiday Inn to #679623042. Cards and condolences can be sent to 50 Midway Drive, Bethel CT 06801.

Even before the accident, Casey and her family have been through a unfathomably difficult year.

In July, Ellis’ mother, Susan Myers, had a liver transplant. Casey wrote frequently on a blog about her mother’s need for a transplant with heartfelt emotion. Susan waited for about 18 months before receiving the transplant.

“A year and a half of unspeakable grievances are over,’’ Casey wrote on her blog on the day her mother had the transplant. “This is not over entirely--There is still going to be time in the ICU and therapies to get her good and strong once again. But she is strong enough to make it through this, and she is strong enough to make a full recovery.”

Casey played a huge part in helping her mother receive the transplant and brought attention to her mother’s lengthy fight. In her last blog entry in August, on her mother’s 51st birthday, Casey wrote: “Today I was blessed to FaceTime my Mom from halfway across the country. For the first time since leaving for school I actually got to see her face--and boy is she looking good! As much as we would have loved for her to be able to celebrate at home, that will have to wait until next year. In the meantime, she has participated in intensive physical and occupational therapies which have paid off tremendously. “

In March, Casey’s father, Daniel , died at age 52. Daniel resided in Brookfield.

Casey’s accident occurred around 10:45 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 23, according to a release from the Abilene Police Department. According to the report, Ellis entered an intersection against a red light. A 19-year-old driver crossing the intersection with a green light struck Ellis as she crossed in front of him. She was transported to Hendrick Medical Center. The report said Ellis was wearing a helmet at the time of the collision.

The intersection at which Ellis was struck, Ambler Avenue and North Judge Ely Boulevard, sits between the campus and a Cracker Barrel where Ellis worked. Both roads have four lanes.

Ellis was studying social work at Abilene Christian. She was an honor roll student at Bethel High School and a member of the school’s Chamber singers. In her yearbook quote in the year she graduated, Ellis quoted musician Gary Allen, who said: " Life ain't always beautiful, but it's a beautiful ride."

In her last blog post in August, Casey expressed hope for her mother, gratitude and promise of holidays ahead. “As I look back on today and Mom's journey, I have to say once more just how thankful I am to her donor and her donor's family,’’ Casey said. “Mom has been given great gifts in her 51 years--some tangible, some not--but this amazing person and her family have given my Mom and our entire family the gift that will last through all Mom's birthdays. Every birthday in this family will see thankfulness for the gift of my Mom's life. Every Christmas will be the same.”

Ellis is the stepdaughter of Robert Myers. Her grandfather, Skip Clapp, is president of the Bethel Patriotic Association.

Service details have not been announced.

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