Holly Travelstead, 18, a 2009 graduate of Hico High School, died Tuesday afternoon after she fell while reportedly "car surfing" with friends. While the loss of a life is tragic enough, Travelstead's death hit family and friends especially hard since she was almost six months pregnant.
An accident report was not available at press time, but Texas Department of Public Safety officials confirmed that a trooper worked the scene of the accident just inside Bosque County on a road between Iredell and Hamilton Counties and that the accident is still under investigation.
In the meantime, family and friends are left trying to get a handle on their loss.
"I've been waiting for her to bounce through the door," said Travelstead's aunt Connie Cox. "It's hard to believe."
Cox said that Travelstead was with several friends when she died.
"She was riding on top of a Blazer with some other kids," Cox said.
Travelstead fell off the vehicle and was killed instantly.
Maegen Mayfield, who grew up and graduated with Travelstead, said she was the kind of girl who cared about everyone.
"She was really fun loving and carefree," Mayfield said.
Travelstead played softball with Mayfield and was involved in Ag classes in high school.
"She was a little country girl," Cox said.
Cox said her niece had been busily planning her future.
"She decided to sit out school this semester and decide what to do once the baby was born in December," Cox said. "She wanted to be a photographer and was a real people person."
Travelstead was also interested in computer graphics and thought about attending Texas State Technical College in the spring, but Cox said Travelstead would have likely started out at Tarleton State University.
"She was very close to her parents," Cox said. "We were real close."
Funeral arrangements for Travelstead have been made through Rutledge-Jones Funeral Home in Hico. Visitation will be 6 - 8 p.m. Saturday. The service is scheduled for Sunday at 2 p.m. at the funeral home.
Car surfing, which originated in the 80s, has grown in popularity of the years. A recent study published in the Journal of Neurosurgery links the trend to the popularity of video games, such as Grand Theft Auto, and viral videos posted on sites like YouTube. The study said Texas, California and Florida reported the highest number of injuries linked to car surfing.