ATV accident takes father's life, but spares son

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MORGAN COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - As the sun starts to fade, Jim King is still trying to process what happened to his buddy, James Lewis.

"Very hard to hear," said King, "I just talked to him Thursday afternoon when we got off work."

King, who's driven a truck with Lewis for years, didn't get the bad news call until Sunday morning.

"I noticed I got a phone call from his cell phone at about ten after 12 last night. I knew something wasn't right because he never calls that late, so I called back and it was his fiance that answered."

The Morgan County Coroner tells us the30-year-old was killed while riding an ATV with his 5-year-old son. The accident happened sometime after 7:30 p.m. Saturday evening on a property off Highway 172.

"He said he'd go out riding around just to clear his head and just take in the scenery," recalled King of Lewis' love to ride.

However, this trip was different. A neighbor, who owns the property that Lewis was on, is said to have witnessed the accident and called 911 after it happened.

"Something went wrong where it went to flip, they believe he threw his son in the opposite direction of it to keep him safe and then it flipped over on him," said King, who said his friend's last action saved his son.

Investigators say the boy only had minor facial injuries.

"That goes to show you what kind of dad he was," stated King.

While King says he's not sure what work will be like without his buddy beside him. He says he knows one thing, Lewis will be missed.

"I was kind of hoping I'd wake up tomorrow morning and just realize it was a dream, it didn't happen, but that's just the reality."

King says his heart breaks because he's lost a friend, but it's even heavier for the fiance and three kids Lewis leaves behind.

WKYT contacted Lewis' fiance, she declined to comment on camera, but says the family "loved him very, very much."

King says Lewis was set to take a test on Monday to try and earn his Commercial Driver's License, so he could start driving his own truck at work.

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