Statesville couple mourns loss of neighbor, prays for recovery of another

STATESVILLE, NC (WBTV) - Late Friday afternoon the ministerial staff at Front Street Baptist Church in Statesville talked to reporters to give an update on the 11 church members who remain in a Tennessee hospital.

This follows a horrible crash of their church bus that happened Wednesday as a senior group returned from a conference.

Eight people died in the wreck, including 6 members of the church.

For Pastors Tim Stutts, Jeremy Miller and Rick Cruz, tending to the needs of the flock has been a challenge.

Stutts remarked that the most difficult part was his desire to be both in Statesville dealing with the needs of local members, and in Tennessee at the hospital where nearly a dozen injured members remain.

Stutts also gave an un update with a bit of good news about those members still in the hospital, saying that all were either improving or stable

Among them is Ed McLelland.  His wife Marcia did not survive, but he is getting better.

"We have always appreciated and loved both of them and I just can't really remember having any different opinion  then as I have now," Kay Capps told WBTV.

Jackie and Kay Capps are the McLellands friends and neighbors.

The McLellands raised two daughters and have a son in law.  Marcia had just decorated her home for fall and she loved flowers.

Marcia raised dahlias and gave a bunch to Kay right before leaving on that bus trip.

"Marcia was looking forward to hearing Charles Stanley," Jackie added.

Ed loves Appalachian State and has a large ASU flag flying underneath an American flag on a pole in the front yard of his Statesville home.

"Ed plays the guitar," added Jackie.

Ed is a band that entertained folks in rest homes, and plowed gardens for his neighbors

"He liked to be helpful," Jackie said.  "He's retired, has time, spends that time being a good citizen."

Like others in the group, Ed was an educator, he taught Civics before retiring from Statesville High School.

Every person involved in that crash has a story to tell, of lives touched, of a difference made, and for so many in the community right now, of a loss for which sometimes the words are hard to come by.

Anyone wishing to help with family support for the members of Front Street Baptist may do so by following this link: