Friends mourn Ben Davis students killed after rollover crash on I-70

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- While police work to determine whether another driver was chasing a group of teens moments before they crashed on I-70, friends and family are remembering the two lives lost during the wreck.

Taylor Parsons, 17, and Brandon Gross, 18, were both students at Ben Davis High School and died during the crash Tuesday night that also left three other teens injured.

"He always kept everyone up even when they're down," Peyton Mahoney said. "He's always determined to work hard he had good grades."

Mahoney remembered Gross as someone he looked up to in ROTC.

"He was a good role model," he said.

Parsons was remembered as a sweet girl who could light up a room with her smile.

"That's what everybody should remember her by is her smile and her laugh," Brooklyn Boswell said.

"She always made sure that everybody was happy," Bethany Richmond said.

Wednesday evening friends marked the two young lives taken too soon with a cross, candles and notes on the side of the road at the Harding St. exit on I-70 east, the scene of the crash.

Olivia Evans, 17, a survivor of the crash still in the hospital, spoke to CBS4 over the phone.

Evans said it started when a group of people started a verbal confrontation with the teens at the park. She said one of the girls started running towards the car when they pulled away, so they stopped. The teen said that's when a driver pulled up beside them, turned around behind the girl and starting chasing them.

Evans said it was a high-speed chase and that there was no reaction time or time to think about putting on seat belts.

Troopers said Parsons crossed three lanes in what appeared to be an effort to get to the exit before losing control. First responders found all five teens lying in the grass after they were ejected from the vehicle. They were not wearing seat belts.

Troopers said Gross was pronounced dead at the scene and later announced Parsons died.

"Taylor was not alone in her last moments. She had friends there supporting her and holding her through it, she was loved," Evans said.

Parsons' cousin said they were humbled and thankful for the outpouring of respect and love from everyone.

"I'm thinking like he's in heaven now he's in a better place so I'm still sad that he's not here with us," Mahoney said of Gross.

At last check, troopers said Kristopher Church, 17, remained in critical condition. Evans and Michael Blackmore, 19, were in serious but stable condition.

If you have any information about the crash or incident at the park you're asked to call Indiana State Police at 317-899-8577.

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