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Jackson student dies in crash on way to graduation practice

JACKSON — A Jackson Academy student died in a one-car crash on the way to graduation practice Thursday afternoon.

Jackson media outlets report witnesses and police officials say JA senior Francis Fortner died after her car hit an uncovered manhole and flipped her car.

Jackson Academy emailed a statement to parents Thursday afternoon expressing its grief.

“It is with great sadness that we share the tragic news of the loss of one of our Jackson Academy senior students. This breaks our hearts, and our entire community of students, educators and families is grieving alongside her family at this terrible loss,” the statement read.

Facebook posts from St. Mark’s Methodist Church youth group said Fortner was driving to the church when the accident happened.

Drivers on Ridgewood Raad has previously reported to police about the uncovered manhole cover. City officials told the Clarion Ledger they were unaware of the uncovered manhole, but were investigating the situation.

Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba released a statement shortly after the accident.

“I am deeply saddened to hear of the death of Miss Frances Fortner. My sincere thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends and classmates of this young lady whose life was taken too soon. We are conducting a full investigation of the accident.”