BY BRYNA ZUMER, firstname.lastname@example.org
3:21 PM EST, November 21, 2012
Shawn Ponton was home on Thanksgiving break, home from Coastal Carolina University where he was studying biology.
He was spending time with a group of friends Saturday night, but on the way home he was killed, along with two others in his group, in a car accident in Street.
The friends may have been returning from Havre de Grace, said the mother of one of them.
"They supposedly went out to dinner in Havre de Grace," Regina Ponton said about that night, adding she did not know where exactly they were having dinner.
Ponton's 21-year-old son, Shawn, had just come home to Melde Court in Jarrettsville the night before for Thanksgiving.
"He was a great kid, and that's what everybody can't believe [about the crash] – a level-headed kid. He was just the greatest kid," Regina Ponton said Wednesday.
The North Harford High School graduate was active in the cancer fighting Relay for Life and played club volleyball at Coastal Carolina, in South Carolina.
Mr. Ponton died in the Saturday night crash that tore apart a 2008 Mazda3, at Prospect Road near Mill Green Road. Also killed were Tyler Anderson, 21, of the 3900 block of West Bend Drive in Jarrettsville and Alexzandria O. McDowell, 20, of the 900 block of Holy Cross Road in Street.
Theresa M. Owensby, 19, of the 2100 block of Mark Street in Bel Air, and David E. Clark, 21, of the 1100 block of Taylor Road in Street, remained in critical condition Wednesday at the Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore.
They were all headed back to Anderson's house, police said.
Visitation for Mr. Ponton will be at McComas Funeral Home in Bel Air from 1 to 4 and 6 to 9 p.m. on Saturday and from noon to 1 p.m. on Sunday.
Services will be at the funeral home at 1 p.m. Sunday, followed by interment in Jarrettsville Cemetery.
Donations can be made to Relay for Life, a passion for Mr. Ponton, at http://www.relayforlife.org/ccusc. Under the "Donate" option, type in "Shawn Ponton" when searching for a participant.
Visitation for Ms. McDowell will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at Evans Funeral Chapel & Cremation Services in Bel Air; it will be followed by a memorial service.
The family has asked that instead of flowers, donations be made to the Humane Society of Harford County, 2008 Connolly Road, Fallston, MD 21047.
Ms. McDowell's family remembered her as a talented artist who played soccer throughout school and wanted to "explore the world" and volunteer in other countries.
She was dating Clark, who remained in the hospital Wednesday.
Services for Mr. Anderson, the driver of the car, were Wednesday at Evans Funeral Chapel. Memorial contributions may be made in his name to No Kill Harford Inc., PO Box 1543, Bel Air, MD 21014.
During Tuesday night's Harford County Council meeting, several council members extended condolences to the families of the victims.
Council President Billy Boniface, whose own 20-year-old son was killed in a truck accident in June, mentioned the "horrific accident" in which Harford County "lost three young lives."
"Unfortunately the families of these victims joined the group of us that I fully understand where they are right now," Boniface said. "I ask that you give them your prayers because your faith is the only thing that can get you through something like this, and your prayers do make a difference."
"They have a rough road ahead of them, not just right now but for the months and years down the road, so my heart goes out to them," Boniface said.
Councilman Chad Shrodes, who represents the Northern Harford district, said he has several friends and family members who knew the people involved.
"It's very, very tough on the community," Shrodes said. He is on a county task force focused on the substantial increase in traffic fatalities in the county.
"We're working very, very hard on making improvements and I know our interim report will be coming up soon, but let's just think of the three, all North Harford graduates, that passed," he said.