Casey Stinson’s family want the 19-year-old to be remembered not for the way he died in a horrific bus crash on Tuesday, but for the bubbly teen he was.
“We just want to say he was well loved and he was happy and we want the community to remember him the way he was,” his older sister Shae Stinson said.
The Proserpine teen was one of 13 people on board a Whitsunday Transit bus that left the road and overturned on Shute Harbour Road about 1pm on Tuesday.
Casey was injured along with nine passengers and the 70-year-old bus driver in the crash.
Queensland Health confirmed Casey suffered “critical head injuries” as a result of the single-vehicle crash and died late Tuesday afternoon.
Shae described him as having the “biggest heart”.
“He was just a jokester, but so loving to his mum and his brother,” she said.
“He was a little bit rough when he was younger but he was just starting to get his life together and he was going to TAFE.
“That’s what he was doing – he was on his way home from TAFE when the bus crashed.”
Friends and family have paid tribute to Casey on a Facebook page created in his memory.
Serena Stinson, a family member, said: “Thank you to the person who has made this page and the slideshow”.
“Our family is grieving more than anyone can imagine but it’s amazing to know that he was so loved by others,” her post said.
Christine Blade said: “RIP Casey, you will be missed. Thoughts and prayers to your family in this difficult time. May you rest easy knowing you will never be forgotten xxx”
“RIP CASEY. you’ll never be forgotten,” Tanya Donovan said.
“What I knew of you, you knew how to make anyone smile. May you fly high with the angels.”
Ben Gerhard said: “RIP brother. It’s crazy I was only talking to you 20 minutes before you hopped in that god-damn bus …”
Shae said she and the rest of Casey’s immediate family, including mum Nikki, dad David and twin brother Cody, were comforted by the messages of support.
“As you can see from the Face
book page, he had a lot of friends here in town and the community is absolutely devastated,” she said.
Yesterday morning a six-month-old boy was discharged from hospital and nine remained in hospital.
Eight were in a stable condition while one, a 17-year-old boy, was in Townsville Hospital in a critical condition.
A 25-year-old woman who was also transported to Townsville was in a stable condition.
A spokesperson for the family of 17-year-old Matt Edwards, who is still fighting for his life, said they wanted to pass on their condolences to all the other families involved in the tragedy.
Meanwhile, Shae said her family was trying to raise money for Casey’s funeral and had started a fundraising site.
“We just want to give him a really nice burial as anyone deserves,” she said.
To donate visit “Remembering Casey Stinson” online at gofundme.com/bhp69pws.