One student killed, three injured in accident

Bob Clark, Rob Montana

One Alfred-Almond Central School student died, and three others were injured in a car accident Tuesday.

Amity-based state police said Paul M. Sharrett, 16, of 18 Angelica St., Almond, was pronounced dead at St. James Mercy Hospital in Hornell following the accident.

Troopers said a 1998 Chevrolet sedan, driven by Sharrett, was eastbound on Karr Valley Road in the town of West Almond when the car entered a turn in the road and ran off onto a soft shoulder on the south side of the road. Sharrett overcorrected and drove the car into a culvert, causing it to overturn several times before coming to rest on its roof.

Troopers said all in the vehicle were wearing their seat belts.

Sharrett and three passengers were transported to St. James Mercy Hospital after the accident.

One passenger, William Brown, 16, also of Almond, was flown by MercyFlight to Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester for head trauma. He was listed in satisfactory condition at Strong this morning.

Also in the vehicle were Tyler Bossard and Lucas Cady, both 17 and from Almond. The two were treated for minor cuts and bruises.

Sharrett was a sophomore, Brown and Bossard are sophomores, and Cady is a junior, all at Alfred-Almond.

Alfred-Almond Superintendent Rich Nicol said his thoughts were with the families of the students.

“Our first concern is to offer sympathy and condolences to the families who are suffering through this tragedy,” he said. “From my position, Paul was always a happy kid, he was very polite in his dealings with me and I enjoyed talking to him.

“He was a nice kid,” Nicol said. “I couldn’t say enough nice things about him.”

Brad Hoyt, A-A boys varsity basketball coach, had some contact with Sharrett, who played on the JV team this season.

“Paul was just a nice kid who worked hard,” Hoyt said. “He was a very good player, he played point guard for the JV team and I had some high expectations for him coming up next season.”

A-A High School Principal Rich Calkins said Sharrett’s JV performance resulted in his being brought up to the varsity basketball team during the playoffs.

“He did so well on JV, he actually started as a varsity player at the end of the year,” he said.

Calkins said Sharrett also was a member of the varsity soccer team, as well as a “great musician and outstanding percussionist.”

“Paul was a student leader, and was actively involved in student government and student activities,” he said. “He was always willing to help out whenever he was asked.

“Paul was the type of young man that brings one up just from being around him, he always had a smile on his face, and he always had a kind word for classmates and faculty,” Calkins added. “He was just an all-around great kid, just a great young man, and there was not a student or faculty member that didn’t enjoy being around him.”

Nicol said the district implemented its crisis intervention plan as soon as administrators were notified of the tragedy.

“We’re working through that right now,” he said this morning. “We are setting up procedures to deal with the situation throughout the day with students.”

As part of the plan, counselors will be available to students, faculty and staff, Nicol said, with set places where they will be located. Teachers also will be ready to speak with students.

“Our goal is to have an adult available to any student who needs help at any point and time,” Nicol said, adding the same would be the case for any adults that needs it. “It is a small community, so not only will the students be affected, the adults will too.”

The Evening Tribune