Fundraiser for Lassiter brothers killed in crash reaches $50K in a day

April 26, 2017
Cobb County School District
James Pratt (left) and Joe Pratt (right) were JROTC members and volunteered at a local elementary school.

Hundreds of people are rallying around a Lassiter High School family mourning the loss of two sons.

In the day since the campaign was posted online, 850-plus people have donated more than $50,000 to cover the funeral expenses of brothers 18-year-old James and 14-year-old Joseph Pratt.

The teens died Monday on Ga. 92 in a wreck with a Fulton County school bus for students with special-needs. None of the students on the bus were hurt.

Lassiter High brothers remembered as hard-working, fun-loving

The brothers were on their way to a dentist appointment.

Teachers spoke fondly of the two Navy ROTC students Tuesday about how committed they were to service.

Read and sign the online guestbook for James and Joseph Pratt

The fund is run by Joanne Prince, who is president of the Navy ROTC cadet-parent organization that covers Lassiter, Pope and Kell high schools.

GoFundMe, which pulls a 5 percent fee for each donation, has a process for folks to raise money on behalf of others.

Some of those who donated to the GoFundMe campaign left kind messages whether they knew the family or not.

Photos: Lassiter High mourns brothers killed in wreck

“My heart breaks for your family. You all are in our thoughts and prayers, please know this community is behind you and here to help in any way we can during this terrible tragedy,” one donor wrote.

Another: “Your neighbors in Chimney Lakes are here to support you.”

The Chick-fil-A on Woodstock Road in Roswell gave $200. A manager at the store said many of the employees go to Lassiter and knew at least one of the young men.

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Jim, the older, was enlisted in the U.S. Marines and had plans to go to Kennesaw State University after graduation next month.

The younger, a freshman, was just getting a feel for high school.

When students die, school counselors treat the emotional wounds

Now, their family must bury them. The teens leave behind their mother, father, and two sisters — the younger one is a junior at Lassiter in the ROTC program.

There are four more families in metro Atlanta who are grieving. A couple hours before the Pratt brothers died, four Langston Hughes High students died in a crash in south Fulton. One survived that wreck.

Read more about the crashes: Two schools. Six victims. Shared grief.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has learned that the young men from Lassiter High School killed in a wreck Monday on their way to dental appointments. Photo: Hyosub Shin/AJC