ORV CRASH: Montezuma Child Dies From Injuries

A little girl from Montezuma has passed away following an off-road utility vehicle accident.

The vehicle rolled over on top of six-year-old Kara Meyer Sunday. She has been hospitalized in Iowa City, but Kara’s mother says she died Wednesday morning.

She made this post on Kara’s CaringBridge site, “Kara left to be with Jesus around 5:00 this morning. She went on her own. She was ready. Kara didn’t want her parents to have to make the difficult decision to let her go. Kara will live on in others. She is going to give her life-saving organs to other children so they can live on. She would have wanted it that way. We all just love her so so much. It’s so hard to think about living without her. We pledge to live better – the Kara way. God, Bless us.”

Kara’s friends started an online fundraising campaign to help her family with medical expenses. You can find out how to help here.

66 comments

  • gimmieabreak

    a heartbreaker.
    no helmet, no seatbelt, no common sense.
    but we blame the “road for giving way” while parking on the edge of a cliff.
    When the dust settles, bring on the child endangerment charges.

    • westonekid

      Really man, really? There are no seatbelts on atv’s the girl died from being crushed by the atv how would a helmet help with that?

      • Steven Shepard

        Agreed!

        Yeah, @gimmieabreak, some ATV’s have seat belts and a helmet would have been a good idea. Let me ask you though. How would a seat belt and helmet have stopped torso injuries caused from being crushed? And YES gravel roads collapse especially during this time of year with a good deal of rain and farmer’s with heavy machinery driving on them.

    • Melanie Bieker (@Melanie_Marie__)

      You are sick. You need help gimmieabreak. I’m gonna guess your pretty young, and looking to get a reaction from people. I hope you remember you will reap what you sow. Praying you NEVER experience a tradgedy ike this and if you do that no one ever condemns you the way you just did this family.

    • mandy

      Seriously? Don’t you think losing a child is punishment enough? I hope you re-evaluate your thought process if this was to happen to you… A family has lost their baby girl do to an an ACCIDENT! Some times all the prevention in the world can’t stop accidents from happening! So how about you give me a break..

    • Justice

      is gimmeabreak really William Dennison? I can’t think of anybody else that would have posted such a nasty post.

      • The Anti William Denison

        Nah, unfortunately William Denison is still being a jerk on other stories. Surprised he isn’t here making some sort of political comments or other wildly inappropriate drivel.

        I don’t think William is creative enough to blog under two names.

  • JMW24

    Prayers for those involved. Can’t imagine the heartache of losing a child. Kara will be a beautiful guardian angel. May God bring you peace in this troubling time

  • jennifer

    What kind of sick and twisted individual posts something like this?? WHEN THE DUST SETTLES???? A child has just passed, parents are mourning, a community crushed! How dare you place judgement on anyone especially a man that loves and adores his children! How dare you???

    • Jess

      The same way everyone passed judgment on the father who’s daughter shot herself with his gun when he was cleaning the bedroom and set the gun up on top of the dresser. It was an accident.
      He loved his daughter very much. He never intended for her to get hurt. He accidently put her in a dangerous situation that went very very bad.
      Charges are being pressed against him.

      • exmontezumian

        There is more than a little difference in the two situations. Both tragic, but having a loaded gun within the reach of a toddler is a little different than taking your child for an ATV ride. I feel bad for both fathers, but not the same thing at all.

  • Brian

    Fella, you are the one who is void of common sense.

    It is an ATV, so there are no seatbelts.

    What good does a helmet do when a vehicle lands on top of your torso?

    We live in a society that is always eager to point the finger, blame someone for every tragedy, no matter how remote the risk or how bizarre the circumstances. As a society, people like yourself LOVE to punish others any time that misfortune strikes. Is it not enough for you that these parents will suffer emotional pain unlike any other in the world for the rest of their days? No. You need to see them suffer more, because unlike the rest of us, people like you believe that you are infalible and no tragedy like this could ever befall you or those close to you because you’re so much smarter and more careful than others.

    Right?

    Right???

    Get a clue guy.

    • Jess

      Would you be so quick to defend this accident if the child had gotten ahold of a gun and shot herself? It was just an accident

    • Jess

      Would you be so quick to defend this accident if the child had gotten ahold of a gun and shot herself? It was just an accident

      parents are supposed to protect children. not put them in dangerous situations that they know are dangerous.

      If he had taken her into the pen with a Bull or a stallion, and she had been trampled to death , would everyone be saying ‘That’s just farm life’?

      Hogs nearly killed my grandpa. Sows especially will attack when they have a littler. They can easily kill a grown man. He didn’t take us kids into the pen to feed the hogs ’cause that’s farm life’, We were instructed to stay off the fence and out of the confinement. Steps were taken to protect us from a dangerous situation.

      Having a 6 year old and a toddler in an off road vehicle on unstable ground, sounds like a somewhat dangerous situation. Perhaps the kids shouldn’t have been there.

      • Steven Shepard

        What is your obsession with guns? Are you pro or anti? I can’t quite figure it out… I’ve seen at least three different mentions from you with the topic.

      • Jess

        Steven,
        I’m actually pro-gun, but, believe there needs to be some control. Kids shouldn’t have guns unless they are properly supervised. Kids should go through gun safety. Convicted felons shouldn’t have guns…ever.

        I also don’t have anything against ATV/UTV or motorcycles for that matter, but, think people need to use some common sense on them.

        People seem to think that this was just an accident, the father should hold no responsibility because people take their kids in these ATV/UTV vehicles all the time.

        A few weeks ago when that little girl shot herself, people were ready to charge her father with murder because he made the mistake of having a loaded handgun where a child could reach it. He was in the room with the child and the gun, just turned his back. Charges have been brought against him, manslaughter, negligence, and failure to care for a dependent person, I believe.

        I don’t see how these situations are so different. Both involved parents who loved their children very, very much and never intended for anything bad to happen. I would venture to say friends of both of these dads would say they were loving, wonderful fathers.

        Both of these situations ended with the death of beautiful little girls who had so much left to give.

        In both of these situations, had the parents acted differently, with a little more caution, these little girls would be planning their summer break from school.

        Someone above says this time of year, road sides collapse, that’s just the way it is. I gather this father was a rancher. He knew how much rain we had been getting. He probably should have realized that the road banks might be soft.

        So, my question is, why was everyone so quick to string up the other dad, but, think the death of this little girl is ok because ‘everyone in small towns does this’ and the dad feels bad. People make this little girls death sound like the collateral damage of rural living. Children don’t have to die just because someone lives in a rural setting. This isn’t Little House on the Prairie.

        It’s a double standard. Death due to negligence is ok as long as it’s a death not caused by something you are opposed to.

      • Brad Phillips (@BradPhillips921)

        This is no where near the same as leaving a loaded gun on a nightstand within reach of a kid. The UTV (not ATV) that the dad was driving can be very safe, just as safe as a car. The child was not driving and did not have control of the vehicle. Further, the dad didn’t do anything reckless or to put the kids in danger. The road gave away, which can be fairly common this time of year on country roads. Maybe you should point your finger at the government for not maintaining the roads?

        If you want to just remove children from every possible even remotely dangerous situation then we probably shouldn’t let them ride in cars, on school buses, or play sports.

        This was an accident, accidents happen and this particular accident caused a horrible tragedy. Trust me, no charges you can drum up in your attempt to point blame and wrap kids in bubble wrap could possibly trump the devastation and guilt I’m sure this father is currently feeling.

        Although I live in WDM, I have spent a lot of time on our family farm, which just so happens to be less than 1/2 mile Southeast of where this happened. I have also spent a lot of time driving UTVs like this. I can tell you, with a ton of experience and first-hand knowledge, that not only are UTVs very safe, but also that something like this could happen without it being the fault of the operator.

  • Ryan Hudnut

    @ gimmieabreak

    Get a life. How can you sit and troll for heartbreaking stories like this and make such evil comments? Just because you have a computer doesn’t give you a right to be stupid.

    • jared hagerty

      Hey gimme a break, you have the audacity to sit back and point the finger at a man that is twice the man you are after a heartbreaking loss? I went to school with this man and grew up with him and he is one of the kindest most genuine people i know. He is a hardworking family man and would do anything for his children. What happened was a freak accident and no more! He is going to suffer his whole life remembering this and you want to punish him more? I have a 7 year old son who rides a four wheeler with me on my dads farm too. I would love to run into you sometime buddy and you can point a finger at me instead and see what happens!

  • Iris Carlstrom

    My heart goes out to this family, especially the dad. This family is grieving over the loss of their little girl and all one can do on here is point the finger and blame. This was a tragic accident and you cannot compare this to the little girl who accidentally shot herself. A parent should never leave a loaded gun in the proximity of any child under any circumstance (that is just common sense if you are a gun owner). I am praying that the families will use these tragic moments in their lives as an opportunity to reach out and teach others about gun and ATV safety. They can use this trial and turn it into a testimony so that the memory of their children can live on.

  • dawnplusfour

    I typically don’t blog about news stories — but I felt I needed to on this particular story. My 12-year old son was hit by a car in July of 2013 — the driver was texting, according to the police “distracted”. He lost most of the bottom portion of his left leg, broke his leg, both his collar bones, suffered a serious concussion and had multiple injuries requiring stitches and plastic surgery from going through the windshield of the vehicle . . . and today we are still undergoing surgeries to repair the damage. He was going to the lake for an innocent afternoon swim — didn’t have a helmet on but in his case, his serious injuries were below the neck (which doesn’t excuse him for not wearing a helmet). We can’t control everything that happens to our children — I am an EXCELLENT, protective mother. @gimmieabreak — unless you were there and know exactly what happened — and even if you were, keep your stupid, cruel and I’m sure smelly mouth shut . . . unless you have something kind and encouraging to say. People like you deserve all the bad karma that comes your way.

  • heartbroken

    This a time when we need to focus on this family that has just lost a beautiful precious child! Surround this family with love! Our prayers are with them that they will find comfort at this very difficult time! Kara is surrounded by angels right now!
    This is not a time to place BLAME!!!!

  • gimmieabreak

    like I said “let the dust settle” then place blame.
    if you don’t approve of all these preventable accidents turning into
    “child endangerment charges”
    protest your local prosecuting attorney’s office.

    • Brad Phillips (@BradPhillips921)

      You’re an idiot.

      Should we also file child endangerment charges every time someone is in a car accident with their kids in the car? Maybe every time a child falls off a bike? Or is tackled in a football game?

      Go wrap your kids in bubble wrap, lock them in the house and let the rest of us have a life worth living.

    • exmontezumian

      I vote that no one responds in any way to gimmeabresk. Ultimate stupidity deserves no reply. ARSE

      • Justice

        anybody besides me notice that we don’t see the hateful comments from William Dennison any longer? However the gimmeabreak comments stink to high heaven just like his did.

  • dawnplusfour

    That is totally not what you said – You are clearly “placing blame” before the “dust settles”. I’m not against prosecuting parents for child endangerment for Pete’s Sake, but what I am against is your disgusting lack of empathy before the “dust settles”.

  • John

    Prayers to the family. If you are not personally affected by this accident. Do not pass blame nor point your finger at anyone. Stop trolling and move on.

  • Jess

    Brad Phillips – you corrected me by calling this a UTV, not ATV. The article says ‘OTV’. It doesn’t sounds like anyone truly knows exactly what he was driving.

    Maybe it had seat belts, maybe it didn’t. Unless you have found an article that shows exactly what the father was driving, you can’t say that it was as safe as a car, you don’t know that. Also, people don’t generally drive their cars on the shoulders or banks of the roads.

    Yes, it was a horrible accident. It was also preventable. I still maintain, children dying is not a normal part of rural living. My parents raised 6 kids in a rural setting. My sister has now purchased the family home and raised 3 kids there. No childhood deaths among us.

    • exmontezumian

      If you want to defend the dad who let his daughter have access to a loaded gun.. suit yourself. There is no comparison and if you can’t see the difference please do not have children

      • Jess

        I’m not saying what the dad with the gun did was right. He was right there with her though. It was not on the nightstand as some people have said. it was on a dresser. he probably thought it was out of her reach.

        I haven’t found a clear law on it, but, it looks like toddlers and small children should be riding them.

        For your information, I have 2 wonderful teenagers. We’ve managed to get them raised almost to adult hood without them shooting themselves, or getting maimed or killed in a farm accident. Maybe it’s because we are more careful with their safety.

        If you think children dying is just a normal, accidental part of rural life, I certainly hope you are a city dweller.

    • mandy

      Jess.. shut it. You don’t know it all. Although I’m sure your “rural” family members would say differently.. MISS KNOW IT ALL

      • Jess

        Mandy, not real sure why you put ‘rural’ in quotes when referring to my family, but, ok.

        The reason I said it seems that people think rural children dying is normal…..read some of these comments. People are like ‘oh, well, we did this all the time when I was a kid….accidents happen….its ok’.

        Guess what, it’s not ok! This was a very preventable accident. For her to have been crushed under the machine, that means she flew out of it. I would say that means more than likely, either she was not belted in, or she was too small for the belt to do her any good.

        I would say that this ORV was not as ‘safe as the family car’ as one blogger stated.

  • Scott Roteck Sr.

    Imagine this little girls Mother or Father, feeling what their feeling, going though what their going through, trying to cope and understand what the rest of their life is to be without this child in it.

    Now imagine dealing with it all and coming across this page, reading what you all are going back and forth on.

    My God people give these poor folks a break,

    Rest in piece Kara

  • exmontezumian

    Great family and RIP Kara. Heartbreaking news today. To Gimmeabreak.. you don’t know enough of the facts to judge. You’re entitled to your opinion, but since it’s based on total ignorance, it simply does not matter. Not even a little. I vote no one replies to this moron again.. ever..

  • Monica

    OMG can’t everyone just say how sorry they feel instead of getting into a heated debate over the different kinds of accidents. Things like this happen and no one is to blame. I am sure the father did not get up and say lets go out and ride the ATV so my little girl can get crushed or the father whose little girl Accidentally shot herself said I am going to take a loaded gun out and let my toddler get a hold of it. Come on people these families are grieving and all they want is your thoughts and prayers as they come to grips with this tragedy. To the family of this little girl I am so sorry for your loss. Don’t worry my mom will look after her she is a Nana and loves to spoil little kids.

  • @SarahE0213

    Montezuma is a very very small community so loosing a child at all devastates the entire town. There were ways that this could have been prevented but I would never wish the heartache of loosing a child on anyone EVER. My heart goes out to her family. I just pray they are able to make it through this!

  • justsaying

    Was the girl driving? Maybe moving the UTV ahead while her dad checked or repaired the fence. Maybe dad left the machine running while he attended his cattle. If so then what? Negligence?

  • Lori

    I was born & raised on a farm, right here in Montezuma. I’m sure there are things I did that could have ended in a bad way, but it didn’t. I personally know this family, & I know just how much they love their little ones, I have witnessed it, unlike some of you who are spouting off such idiotic comments. I hope for your sake gimmieabreak, that you NEVER have to deal with such a tragedy as this. Karma has a funny way of coming back around to bite ya in the butt. You come across as quite conceited, rude & heartless. Montezuma is a small community, rural, with a lot of farmers…. We are all reeling from this ACCIDENT.so could you please, please stop with the heartless comments? For the sake of these amazing parents, just SHUT UP. Seriously, it was an accident, let’s just leave at that & let this family grieve. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

  • gimmieabreak

    yes Lori et al
    take shots at me when you can’t handle the truth.
    I was raised on a farm and still own part of it, so what.
    I’m a welfare farmer.
    been there done that.
    I’ve seen more heartbreak tragedies than most.
    If I were the prosecuting attorney I’d have Dad in handcuffs in about 3 days.
    I’ll shut up when I’m good and ready.

  • Teach

    Once again… Zip your evil tongue. I love Karma for losers like you. I bet with all if your negativity and knowing everything it’s already slapped your ugly face HARD numerous times. This good family is grieving their sweet little girl. You only know what you’ve read and to base your opinion on only that shows us exactly how narrow-minded you are. You are an embarrassment to being an Iowan.

  • Teach

    @gimmeabreak
    And the family donated Kara’s organs. You couldn’t be more wrong on your judgement of this kind family…

  • Laurie

    May God give this family the Peace and Strength they need to get through this tragedy!! And may God silence the ignorant and those lacking compassion so this healing may take place. God gives us all a start and end date before we’re ever born, no one knows their date, so live well. Unfortunately no one knows how they’ll go either, be it peaceful or tragic. Remember Kara for all the lessons that can be learnt from her and her shirt time on earth, be it that if love, her giving side, her caring side, whatever the lesson God had a plan for her and she will live on through her memories that she left with those that knew her!!

  • Kat Streif

    I pray to God that these parents never see these comments. I lost my daughter in a car accident. I was the most protective mother ever. I never allowed my children to own a trampoline, never let them walk to school, always was overly diligent about car seats and the list goes on…the bottom line is that this was an accident. That is why they call them accidents. I’ve seen parents who don’t supervise their children whatsoever (I have been a corrections officer for ten years). Guess what? Nothing happens to their children. I ask myself why my daughter is not here everyday. God bless this family. I will not judge them. Instead, I will pray for them and send them a card.

  • Justice

    My grandchildren are aged 10, 2 @ 8 and also a 4 yr old. I cannot imagine what this entire family is going through with the loss of the beautiful little girl. Why is it that no longer there can be an accident but somebody has to be held accountable? Even the guy who’s little girl grabbed the gun and accidently shot herself. Seriously? I wish I could be on his jury. Anybody with common sense can understand such a thing as an accident. Unfortunately, law enforcement no longer gets it. Maybe “intent” should be looked at before charges are filed.

  • Dee Dee

    I haven’t heard a single person say that kids dying young is “just part of farm life”! Seriously? However, jumping on the Ranger to go check livestock IS a part of farm life. It’s second nature to jump on and go. I have lived in Montezuma my entire life and have contact with this family on a daily basis; from the grandparents, who are lifelong residents, to their kids who decided to stay here and start their own families. If her dad could take back that morning, he would! In a heartbeat. If he could switch places with her, he would! In a heartbeat. If he could spare his wife or other children from this heartache, he would! In a heartbeat. Do people just think that our children “out here in the sticks” are just a replaceable farmhand? If so, you don’t know this family and you certainly don’t know our community. Say all the negative things you want. Place blame where you think it should be placed. Do or say whatever you need to do or say. At the end of the day, they are still a family that is grieving over the loss of their granddaughter, daughter, sister, niece, friend and we are still the community that will gather that family close, fill in the gap between them and God, and pray together for strength and healing.

  • Brenda

    How about everyone stops their drama on it and let the family be! You know they read this stuff and all you guys are doing is messing with their already emotional upset on the situation! ALWAYS THINK OF YOURSLEF IN THEIR SHOES AND IF YOU WOULD APPRICIATE SUCH COMMENTS.

  • gimmieabreak

    really Brenda…what “grieving family member” takes time out to check social media comments???
    (((gimmieabreak)))

    maybe, just maybe “justice” has a point.
    the long arm of so called AmeriCan justice system should soon be knocking at Dad’s door.
    just like the daughter that recently fell into a campfire and just like the accidental shooting.
    again, assuming farmers aren’t exempt.
    after all, we farmers are a “privileged class”

    • Teach

      What kind of real “farmer” has enough time to write numerous narrow-minded comments. All the farmers I know are too busy working with livestock, using machinery, etc. to be commenting on a tragic situation. I’m calling you out… You are a poser.

  • gimmieabreak

    Good morning Teach, you’re my favorite hypocrite.
    I mainly work 2 weeks in the spring & 2 weeks in the fall.
    do hay & spray weeds in between.
    not every farmer raises livestock when ethanol pays better.
    God help us you’re not a real teacher.

  • Jess

    Ok, well, my heartfelt prayers go out to this family.
    I cannot imagine losing my child.

    There are a lot of differing opinions. Working off of a blog, and not REALLY knowing what happened, none of us are going to be able to convince the others of our opinions. We are still free to have them though, and even to express them.

    To all of you, whether we agree or not, may you live long, happy lives.

    I think I will go hug my kids now. (although, they are teenage boys so they won’t really appreciate it much!!)

  • Brenda

    My heart goes out to this family and their loss. I can’t imagine the pain they are enduring. I do know that the Lord has received this precious baby into his care and that she will never again be hungry, cold, tired or cry. I know the same Lord will provide for the peace this family needs to keep going forward and that he will reunite them one day. May the peace of God be with you.

  • heartbroken

    I’ve read all these comments and by far their are way more support for this family than non-support! What’s that tell you gimmiabreak? Tells me you are a huge minority with these comments! And, you are a lazy farmer who can’t get out of his house to raise pork and beef so thanks for farmers like you, we the consumer have to pay high pork and beef prices at the grocery store! Instead, you sit and prey on stories like this for what?? Make yourself feel better? Seriously, this family has just lost a precious daughter to an accident! Show some compassion to this Father, Mother, brother and community!! I was raised in a small town just west of Montezuma, and had families go through what this family is going through! Believe me, this father and family will never be the same! They say time heals, yes it does but when you loose a chid I don’t think it ever heals!!! This is a time when we as God’s people need to surround this family with LOVE and COMPASSION! They are grieving right now and I’m sure this father is thinking….why wasn’t it me instead of my daughter! This is the worst pain and suffering that a human being can be put through to loose a child! Please everyone, pray for this family and this community to get them through this difficult time!
    God Bless!!

  • Slice of Realtiy

    Accidents don’t just happen. There is always a failure of some sort, whether it be mechanical or just carelessness, etc. The issue becomes, at what point do we as a society start placing enough blame to warrant penalties or legal action against those invoved.

    In this case the parent did not knowingly place his child in jeapordy having her sit in the vehicle on the side of the road. There is no level of forethought for or knowedge of the road giving way in that exact spot, even if he knew roads this time of year could be loose. Example; Jet airliners do crash occassionaly, however, having your child travel in one doesn’t make you liabile for death if the airliner crashes.

    Should he have parked the vehicle in the middle of the road. What would you say if he did and a car hit the girl.

    Mistakes happen, people get hurt and sometimes die. There’s always someone or something to blame, always. The question that this group is debating is where do we draw the line. When do we forgive a mistake versus prosecute one.

    I say this father will never get over that moment in his life when se saw his daughter get hurt. He will relive it forever and the hurt will never go away. If he could have done something different, I am positive he would have.

    • Jess

      Very well thought out comment, Slice of Reality.
      I think this blog shows that it would be very hard to get a group of people to draw that line in the same place.

  • JJ

    Common sense would be this “accident” could have been avoided. ATV vehicles are for adult use not for children. There are warnings on ATV’s saying that children shouldn’t ride on them. I feel very sorry for this family that they lost their child to recklessness.

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