15-Year-Old ND Cross-Country Champ Killed

GARRISON, N.D. (AP) — A Garrison girl who died in a collision with a fuel truck was a North Dakota high school cross-country running champion.

The North Dakota Highway Patrol says Robyn Essler was driving on Highway 37 just east of Garrison when she crossed the center line and crashed head-on into the fuel truck.

The patrol says the truck’s driver hit the brakes and swerved but couldn’t avoid the collision. Essler was thrown out of the car and killed.

The 15-year-old Essler was a freshman at Garrison High School. She won the state Class B cross-country title in Fargo last October.

The Forum reports that earlier this month, Essler took part in a champions’ parade at the state Class B girls’ basketball tournament in Bismarck.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • AJ

    Why was this 15 year old driving alone?

    • nicki

      “The minimum driving age in North Dakota is 16. You may not drive in North Dakota if you are under 16, even if you are licensed in another state. However, a North Dakota resident can obtain a restricted license at the age of 15. A parent or legal guardian must sign for a minor under the age of 18 to be issued a permit or license.”– NDDOT

      • The Good Old Days...or Not

        About 30 years ago, I got my license to fully drive by myself anywhere I wanted. I was only 14 and this was in North Dakota. I think a lot of it had to do with so many kids living on farms….whatever the reason I look back now & can’t figure out how this was allowed (my parents didn’t have to sign anything) I was 14 and able to drive anywhere……scary

  • Yolanda

    I agree with AJ .. Why was she driving alone?


    i agree with AJ and Yolanda. I also want to conway my condolences to the family and friends of this child. May she rest in peace.


    i agree with AJ and Yolanda. I also want to convay my condolences to the family and friends of this child. May she rest in peace.

  • SD from MN

    My friends son was killed by a 15 yr old from ND (in MN) on this past Christmas Eve. His son lost his father and his daughter will never know him since she was born a month after his death! It’s so sad all the way around…

  • lancelot

    Whenever I hear teen driver, accident, swerving over the center line- I think texting and driving.

  • Wear your seatbelt!

    Thrown out of the car? Her seat belt wasn’t working?

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