Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

January 31, 2013

Autopsy indicates NDHS senior died on impact

Rob Cox
Greensburg Daily News

Greensburg — Autopsy results for Brandon Coldwell, 19, the North Decatur High School (NDHS) senior who died in a one-vehicle crash Tuesday night, were returned Thursday afternoon.

Coldwell’s cousin, Nikkie Lair of Westport, told the Daily News via telephone interview that those results indicate Coldwell died on impact from a fractured skull.

According to Lair, Coldwell was wearing his seatbelt, but the belt snapped in the accident.

Coldwell expressed confidence that the results of a toxicology screen — not due for six-to-eight weeks — would prove negative for alcohol or drugs of any kind.

“Brandon didn’t take any medicine, and he wasn’t a drinker, and he certainly didn’t do drugs,” Lair said. “He wouldn’t even take ibuprofen for a headache. So we know there was nothing in his system. I understand people will speculate about such things, but such speculations are just wrong.”

Lair added that Coldwell’s car was located at 8:30 a.m., Wednesday morning by her husband, Jason Cooper, and by Michael Herron, also a cousin.

“They found the car,” Lair said. “And that led to the formation of the search party.”

After hours of searching, Coldwell’s body was ultimately found by his Uncle Rodney Lozier of Osgood, according to Lair.

More than 50 searchers participated in the extensive operation to find Coldwell’s body, including personnel from the Millhousen, Letts, Westport, and Greensburg Fire Departments, as well as a rapid-water rescue team from Letts and various personnel from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources and Decatur County EMS.

Lair pointed out, too, that although Coldwell attended NDHS, he’d transferred from South Decatur High School earlier in the year to graduate with his girlfriend. He was in the process of deciding whether to study for a career in the medical field or as a chef.

According to Lair, following his funeral and cremation Saturday night, Coldwell’s ashes will be spread with the ashes of his grandfather — “Papaw” Bobby Lozier — at an undisclosed location.

Contact: Rob Cox at 812-663-3111 x7011.