A Baldwin County family is mourning the loss of Jalen Yelder. The 17-year-old Baldwin County High School student was killed Sunday, October 13, 2019 when the vehicle he was in crashed on Highway 31.
“My family…we are just really hurt, just really mourning,” said Yelder’s aunt, Bridgett Milhouse. “This is something we never thought we would be doing.”
The tragic news was a shock and Jalen will be dearly missed by his family and friends. The SUV he was in was southbound on Highway 31 when Troopers say it rolled over into the median near Quinley Road. Troopers say Yelder died at the scene. A passenger, 18-year-old Destin Evans of Bay Minette was injured. Counselors were on-hand at school Tuesday, October 15, 2019 for any students who needed their services.
“Once we have notification of something tragic like this happening, we just want to make sure that all the available resources that we have at our disposal are made available to the students, the faculty as well as some of the community,” explained Director of Prevention and Support for Baldwin County Schools, Anthony Sampson.
The outgoing teen was set to graduate in December and loved cars and horses. His family is trying to help each other cope with the loss through prayer. Milhouse scrolled through pictures of Jalen, remembering all the joy he brought to those around him, including his 10-year-old brother. Milhouse said that’s how she will remember him.
“He could help you do anything, you know. Jalen do this. He never said no. He never…you never heard him complain about nothing,” Milhouse recalled. “Just never seen him unhappy and he uhm…I’ll remember him smiling. He just had this smile to light up the room and that’s how…that’s how I’ll remember him.”
Yelder’s family said the entire community has been great in showing support. They said the school system also sent a counselor to the home Monday to talk to Jalen’s younger brother, Jase. The family will have a service honoring Jalen’s life somewhere in Bay Minette Saturday. Those details are still being worked out.