UPDATE: Gilbertville teen dies in Buchanan County crash - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: Gilbertville teen dies in Buchanan County crash


A Gilbertville teen died on Tuesday night after a crash in Buchanan County.

The Iowa State Patrol says 16-year-old Clayton Johnstone was headed west on 270th Street when his car was hit by an SUV that was headed north on Benson Shady Grove Road at about 10:05 p.m.

Johnstone died as a result of the crash.

Troopers say that 57-year-old Steven Phillips of Jesup was injured in the crash, but the report doesn't list what vehicle he was in.

The accident remains under investigation.

In the hours after the crash, the news of Johnstone's death traveled quickly among his friends.  He lived in Gilbertville and attended high school in Jesup.

"When you lose a young life, that's tragic and emotional. Everybody knows everybody, and it ripples further and deeper throughout the community," said Jesup Community Schools Superintendent Nathan Marting.

Early Wednesday morning, administrators at the high school in Jesup gathered counselors and clergy members to help students get through this difficult time.

"You plan for things in hopes of never having to deal with it. But when you do, you follow the plan," said Marting.

Johnstone was a junior, but he has friends in many classes, and many communities.

"Clayton was real popular with a number of students and you could see that today, walking though the halls, the impact felt you know, across... not just in the junior class," said Marting.

In a small community, everyone feels the pain, but everyone is able to grieve together.

"Next couple of days, it'll be real difficult. But we'll continue to support our students and help them through this," Marting added.

Dozens of friends and family members gathered in Gilbertville this evening for a candlelight vigil. We honored the family's request for privacy at that gathering.

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