- Written by Steve Frank
An early Sunday morning motorcycle accident resulted in the death of an Ashe County teen and the injury to another teen. The State Patrol said te crash occurred on Parker Eller Road in Lansing at about 4 a.m. on Sunday morning, State Trooper Kevin Aldridge identifying Tanner Pruitt, 19, of Crumpler and Elijah Bledsoe, 19, of Todd as those on the cycle. Aldridge said the two were riding together on a red 2005 Kawasaki Ninja when the driver, Pruitt, ran off the right side of the roadway where the motorcycle struck a large fence-post. The two teens were thrown from the motorcycle and landed in a field. Lansing Volunteer Fire Department and Ashe Medics were the emergency responders at the scene of the accident with Pruitt airlifted to Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center where he died later that morning. Bledsoe was transported to Ashe Memorial Hospital where he was treated and released the next day. Trooper Aldridge said Pruitt was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, but that Bledsoe was wearing a helmet. The trooper said speed was not a factor and that it is currently unknown whether drugs of alcohol played a role in the accident. Driver inexperience and error have tentatively been cited as the cause of the accident, pending the release of the toxicology report.