This past Labor Day, Katie Yule, a 15-year-old student of Keswick Christian
School was fatally injured in a boating accident on Lake Seminole in Pinellas County.
The accident occurred when Katie, along with a companion, Aubree Franz,
13, of St. Petersburg, were riding on a tube together being towed behind
her father’s center console motorboat. As the boat was maneuvering,
the tube collided with a personal watercraft (wave-runner) being operated
by Ryan Godcharles, 21, of Naples.
According to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s office, Yule died from
serious internal injuries including a punctured lung. Franz survived the
collision and suffered only minor injuries. Godcharles was uninjured by
Officials are continuing to investigate the crash, but early data shows
that it appears to have been a tragic accident.
Friends and supporters of the Yule family fostered an outpour of support
at a memorial service held at Katie’s school in the chapel on the
evening following the tragedy.
Counselors and local pastors remained on campus in the days following the
accident to help students cope with the loss. Pastor Jerry Busby, a member
of the Keswick school board, explained how he saw Katie as a blessing
to everyone she met. “She was a joyful soul and a fun friend,”
said Bugsby at the Tuesday evening prayer service. “She was a follower
of Jesus Christ.”