Update: 4-Year-Old NC Girl Killed By Falling Tombstone

A funeral has been scheduled for a 4-year-old girl who died after the cross from a tombstone fell on her and her older sister.

The funeral for Peyton Elizabeth Townsend will be held at 6 p.m. Monday at First Baptist Church of Blowing Rock. She died Friday while playing in the cemetery at Mount Paran Baptist Church.

Highway Patrol 1st Sgt. Gary McClelland says the cross struck 6-year-old Lilly Grace Townsend on a leg and injured her slightly. He says the cross struck the younger girl on the upper body.

He estimates the cross weighs at least 1,000 pounds.

The girl's mother, Sarah, is a nurse, and her father, Randall, is a state trooper and paramedic. Both worked to save Peyton, who died at Johnson City Medical Center in Tennessee.

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Officials say a 4-year-old girl has died after part of a tombstone fell on her at a Deep Gap cemetery.

The Rev. Rick Cornejo told WSOC-TV that the girl was one of several children playing in the churchyard and cemetery at Mt. Paran Baptist Church before Bible study classes on Friday night.

Cornejo says the children were running around when a massive cross fell off a tombstone and struck the girl.

The girl was airlifted to a hospital, where her parents rushed to see her, and was later pronounced dead.

The girl's name has not been released. Cornejo says counselors are at the church to help other children who witnessed the accident.


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