Community saying goodbye to 5-year-old killed in crash

This weekend, a Lincoln County community is celebrating the life of Ryllie…or “Z” as everyone called her, because her father says that’s what she would want.

“She wouldn’t want nobody crying. That’s for sure. She’s the happiest kid you’d ever meet,” said Wayne Vonlinger on Friday, hours before visitation services for his 5 year old daughter were to begin at Spurlin Funeral Home in Stanford.

The child died and her mother Amy Vonlinger was seriously hurt in the March 10th crash. Visitation and funeral services were put off to allow her mother to heal up.

“She’s a fighter. She’s getting through it. We’re all getting through it,” Vonlinger said.

The accident happened where U.S. Hwy 127 and old Hwy 127 meet, just north of Hustonville. Mrs.Vonlinger was taking her daughter to school when her car collided with a truck.

Some in the area describe it as a dangerous intersection. In fact, county officials say there’s been several fatal accidents there. And now Vonlinger hopes some good can come from his daughter’s death.

“I’m not blaming anyone. It was an accident. Accidents happen. For a reason,” he says.

Vonlinger hopes the recent crashes there there could prompt transportation officials to add safety features, such as a caution or a stop light.

“Maybe that was Z’s purpose. Maybe she’s going to save a lot of lives.”

In the meantime..he has a message for other parents.

“Love your child every night.”


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