by Martha Quetsch
ELBURNâ€”Police investigators are trying to determine the cause of a Campton Hills crash that killed Kaneland High School senior Kelsey M. Barsic, 17, of Elburn.
At 6:10 a.m. Tuesday, Campton Hills Police responded to the crash scene after residents reported seeing a vehicle against a tree at 41W323 Burlington Road. Police Chief Gregory Anderson said officers found Barsic dead in the vehicle, a 1998 Chevrolet Malibu.
The Kane County Coroner’s office will establish the approximate time of death. Anderson said that based on the condition of the victim’s body, she had been deceased for some time. He said it was apparent that the injuries she sustained in the crash caused her death, although the coroner will make the final determination.
The westbound vehicle Barsic had been driving apparently left the south side of the roadway, traveled for a significant distance through an open field and struck a tree of about three feet in diameter, Anderson said. There was no apparent evidence of braking or steering maneuvers before the vehicle struck the tree, he added.
â€œThe tracks in the grass showed the vehicle moved in a straight line across the field,â€ Anderson said.
Police and the Kane County Accident Reconstruction Team are trying to determine the speed Barsic at which had been driving based on evidence at the scene.
Anderson said based on interviews with the victim’s family on Tuesday, Barsic had been at a friend’s house Monday night and was possibly going to another friend’s home when the accident happened.
It is not known yet whether Barsic was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the crash. Amy Renwick, of the coroner’s office, said toxicology test results could take up to three weeks.
Barsic was not wearing a seatbelt nor did the air bag deploy during the crash; if the victim had been wearing a seatbelt, she may have survived, Anderson said.
Conley Funeral Home is making the funeral arrangements for the Barsic family.
Kaneland High School officials learned of Barsic’s death on Tuesday. They said she would have started her senior year when classes begin Aug. 26.
Barsic was an outgoing, friendly girl who was enrolled in the health occupations program at Fox Valley Career Center, working toward her certification as a nurse’s assistant, Assistant Principal Diane McFarlin said.
Visitation will be from 2 to 8p.m., with a wake service to begin at 8 p.m. Monday, Aug. 24, at Conley Funeral Home, 116 W. Pierce St., Elburn. A mass to celebrate her life will begin at 11 a.m., Tuesday, Aug. 25, at St. Gall Church. Fr. Karl Ganss, pastor of the church, will officiate and interment will follow at S.S. Peter and Paul Cemetery, Virgil.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial has been established in her name. Checks may be made to the â€œKelsey Barsic Memorialâ€ and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, 60119. Tributes may also be forwarded to the same address or on the web at www.conleycare.com.