Cartersville teen dies in crash

Published 6:00 am Friday, December 4, 2020

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The Cartersville community experienced a tragedy this week when a local teen was killed in a single-vehicle crash Monday, Nov. 30.

Malachi D. McLean

Virginia State Police (VSP) responded to a single-vehicle crash on Route 45 (Cartersville Road) just a mile north of Route 626 (Meador Road) at approximately 3:37 p.m. Monday afternoon.

A 1998 Ford Explorer driven by Malachi D. McLean, 18, of Cartersville, was traveling south on Route 45 when it ran off the left side of the road and struck a tree, according to Shelby Crouch of the VSP.

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McLean died at the scene.

Family and friends were heartbroken by the news of McLean’s passing.

Family described McLean as a devoted man of God serving faithfully at Rising Mt. Zion Baptist Church where he volunteered as an usher, armor bearer and walking trustee while actively assisting with the Mighty Men of God ministries and the weekly food bank pickup and distribution.

“Malachi was a gentle giant,” sister Chante Cooper stated. “He loved his family dearly and spent his spare time binge-watching movies with his mom, laughing and enjoying his life.”

Described as having an infectious smile and a quiet personality, McLean was a member of the Cumberland County High School Class of 2020 and frequently enjoyed playing football, basketball and visiting friends from high school.

“We were saddened to hear about the passing of Malachi,” Cumberland County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Chip Jones said Tuesday.

Jones added a high school counselor was available this week in case any students or staff needed support during this difficult time.

A viewing/wake has been arranged for Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m. at Colbert-Wiley Funeral Home, with a funeral scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 6 at 1 p.m. at Rising Mt. Zion Baptist Church.

Additionally, a GoFundMe page has been set up by McLean’s family in order to help pay for funeral expenses. The page had raised more than $3,000 dollars in funds as of Wednesday afternoon, Dec. 2.