11-year-old with local ties dies in tragic accident

By Brian Sweeney
An 11-year-old-boy with many ties to the local area, was killed October 1 when he tried to save three of his siblings inside the family van as it rolled down the driveway of their Ballston home.
State police said that Lane Rowe was tragically killed after he raced to try to stop the van, which had begun descending the driveway. The youngster had reportedly been attempting to prohibit the vehicle from entering the busy adjacent roadway.

Heroic effort
Police said that Lane reached into the open driver’s door and grabbed the steering wheel in an attempt to redirect the van. When that effort failed, he ran behind the minivan, pushing against the vehicle in an effort to halt its momentum. He eventually stumbled into a ditch and was run over by the van.

Family members told police that Lane’s 12-year-old sister, Luca, was sitting in the front passenger’s seat and had reached over to turn on the ignition so she could open the sliding side door for her brother. When that didn’t work, she turned the ignition the other way and that’s when the van began rolling.

Police said that Lane’s mother, Jennifer, had briefly left the Dodge Caravan when she went back inside the house to pick up something. The van was turned off and in park, investigators said. They are still trying to determine what caused the van to begin rolling.

Jennifer said that she had been out shopping with three of her children (Lark, age four, and Felix, age two were in car seats in the back of the van), and had stopped home to pick up Lane, who was scheduled for a physical.

Area connections
Lane’s mother, Jennifer (Finkle) Rowe is a Margaretville Central School graduate. Lane, who had just started sixth-grade, often spent time in the Catskills with his grandparents, Kelly Corners residents Carolyn and Lynn Bradley.

Mr. Bradley told the Catskill Mountain News, “The family would like to again say thank you to the overwhelming support from the Burnt Hills school and community, as well as to many of our friends and neighbors here in Delaware County. It is our wish at this time to privately grieve our tragic loss.”

Everyone is still trying to come to grips with the tragedy as they remember the remarkable young man who died in a selfless act trying to protect his siblings.

“I see a lot of myself in Lane,” said his father, Bob Rowe, told the Albany Times Union. “He was funny. He would dance. He would do anything to always make you laugh. He was just a great kid. He had a lot of promise.”

“He died a hero,” Carolyn Bradley told the Times Union.
An obituary appears on page 4A.