Community remembers Ben Bartlett, 2 children who died - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Community remembers Ben Bartlett, 2 children who died

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CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) - A community in pain and sorrow Thursday were remembering a well-known church leader and elementary music teacher along with two of his children.

The Cedar Falls family was vacationing in Florida when the three were killed in a crash.

It happened on Interstate 10 Wednesday afternoon when a truck crashed into the Bartletts' SUV.

Ben Bartlett was killed, along with two of his kids -- 11-year-old Charlie and 9-year-old Bailey.

Ben's wife Erin survived with their 7-year-old daughter Kaia, but both were injured.

The news was hitting hard back home with their Orchard Hill Church community, where Ben was a worship leader. 

"Nothing showy about him, but just an amazing guy that followed Jesus and led his wife and family and his community to know Jesus in everything that he did," said Tim Walsten, a family friend. 

Ben was also a music teacher at Cedar Heights Elementary while his two children were part of the Cedar Falls School District.

The school will be offering counseling for all students affected by this tragedy.

"We're trying to help wrap our arms around them and support them, including the family, including students and staff," said Andy Pattee, Cedar Falls Superintendent. "This is a big loss."

Counseling will be Friday at Orchard Hill Elementary from 9 to 11 a.m., and at Cedar Heights Elementary from 2 to 4 p.m. 

There is a benefit account set up for Erin Bartlett at Veridian Credit Union under the Erin Bartlett Benefit Account.

Orchard Hill Church is also giving updates for the family here: http://www.orchardhillchurch.org/update
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