By Jennifer Edwards
Enquirer staff writer
MASON - An 18-year-old Mason High School senior who was a captain of the wrestling team and loved studying electronics was killed in a two-vehicle crash Monday.
James Victor Horning was thrown from his pickup truck after it collided with a car on rain-slick Interstate 75 in Lockland near the Shepherd Lane exit about 7 p.m., police said.
He was pronounced dead at the scene. He was not wearing a seat belt and neither drugs nor alcohol were a factor, Lockland Police Chief Mike Murphy said Tuesday.
Experts were still working Tuesday to reconstruct the accident to determine what happened.
Horning is one of nearly two dozen teens killed in car accidents this year in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky.
On Tuesday, grief counselors were at Mason High School and Scarlet Oaks Career Development Campus in Sharonville, where Horning studied commercial and residential electricity, school officials said.
Horning earned the highest grades in his electronics class this semester and was a two-time qualifier for district competition in wrestling. He also was a volunteer youth wrestling coach.
"It is a very sad day for us," said Shelly Hausman, Mason High's spokeswoman. "Teachers, coaches, students, everyone who came in contact with him is certainly feeling his loss right now.
"It's a tough day," she said.
A group of wrestling parents, students and coaches released a written statement Tuesday, saying Horning's legacy would be celebrated and missed.
"The Mason wrestling family lost one of our own last night. It's important to us that everyone knows and remembers James Horning," the statement read. "He was a beloved teammate and loyal friend.
"James had made great improvement, and was looking forward to a senior year of great accomplishments and senior leadership.
"His fellow senior captains have dedicated the 2004-05 season to his memory. We love you, James, and we'll miss you."
At Scarlet Oaks, Horning was remembered as "a friend to all," said Nancy Mulvey, campus dean.
He was eager to further his education in electronics by working as an apprentice this spring.
"He loved electricity," said his instructor, Dave Spears. "He was working very hard so that he could get a good placement this spring.
"He was an excellent student. He is so dearly missed. He was such a genuinely good person."
He was the kind of kid to turn a bad situation into good, Mulvey said.
"That's why they always appreciated him in class. He was always the cheerleader," she said.
Funeral arrangements are pending.
Ohio Poll shows race tightening once again
Thousands of new-voter cards in Ohio undeliverable
Cheney too busy chatting to try Cincinnati chili
'The Hug' becomes a TV ad for Bush
Complaint to be filed on Issue 3 signs
Bunning fails to show up for his debate vs. Mongiardo
Mongiardo campaign gets cash infusion
Fletcher stumps to boost Hayden
State vigilant on vote fraud
Teachers call off walkout
Deluge for a day: Only 11 have been wetter here
Mason senior wrestler dies in two-vehicle wreck on I-75
ABC-TV anchor turns camera on Cincinnati
IN THE TRISTATE
Black journalists' group honors veterans and students
Mother, son killed in crash of van, semi
People line up for flu shots
Former judge sentenced to 10 days on sex charge
Dad captured in Ohio after Amber alert
At moment of capture, robber showed pride
Local news briefs
Wildlife group: Cut mercury emissions
Neighbors news briefs
Gunman killed in standoff with cops
Bengals QB wins hearts of pupils
Public safety briefs
Soldier brings Iraq war back home
He remembers the 'ups' and forgets the 'downs'
Higher Ed on way to Warren
Message to senator: Road help needed
St. William lab dedicated today
Emma H. Kohl, 93, aviation pioneer
Dodgeball grows up
Lawmakers pass Ky. health plan
Government finally has a home of its own
Ruling rejects UK police report policy
N. Ky. news briefs
Runaway used tires land in Boone creek
Bellevue condos to merit name