Annah and her 13-year-old sister Emily Robinson were passengers in a car driven by Forrest Blake, 18, when the 2014 Ford Mustang left the roadway on Rail Hill Road in Lumpkin County and struck a tree on the passenger side, said Chase Greene of the Georgia State Patrol.
The crash took the life of front seat passenger Annah, while Emily was taken by helicopter to Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta with head trauma, internal bleeding, and two broken legs.
The driver was taken by ground EMS to Northeast Georgia Medical Center, said Greene, where he was treated for a concussion and released.
The accident is under investigation by the GSP and charges are pending, Greene added.
Annah, a member of the varsity cheerleading squad, was always first to offer a kind word to her teammates, said coach Ashley Winsor.
“She was always smiling and laughing,” said Winsor, who added that Annah didn’t like to see people hurting. “It didn’t matter if she knew you or not, she would help.”
Winsor recalled the times when Annah offered encouragement to freshmen cheerleaders on the squad this year.
“Even if we were losing, she had a smile,” Winsor said.
“She always kept her head held high even in tough times and situations,” said friend Alexandria Simpson. “She was strong in will and in Christ.”
Simpson said her friend was always enthusiastic. “There was never a dull moment while knowing her.”
Sandy Kassouf, who taught Annah in spanish class, described her as a good student and kind to classmates.
“It’s going to be hard to see that empty desk,” said Kassouf, who also coached Annah’s JV competition cheer team.
“She was a sweet girl. I never had to worry about her,” Kassouf said. “She got along with the entire squad. She was dependable and hard working.”
During the school’s spirit week earlier this year, Kassouf recalled how Annah came in on ‘80s day with her hair crimped. “She said her mom was so excited to help her,” Kassouf added.
Winsor said Annah had a way of finding the good in any situation.
“She had a happy spirit,” Winsor said. “She loved the Lord and she let that shine through her actions.”
Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Wesley Burnett said local deputies responded to the accident and then turned it over to the GSP.
LCSO will assist in the ongoing investigation, Burnett said.
There was not enough roadway evidence to determine the speed of the vehicle at the time of the accident, Greene said, but the GSP will be able to find out more when they analyze the car’s on-board computer.
He added that there was no sign that alcohol or drugs were involved in the accident, and seat belts appeared to be used.
The accident happened at approximately 7 p.m. on Rail Hill Road, which is off Rock House Road.
The sisters had just left their residence, Greene said, when Blake, also from Lumpkin County, ran off the road on the right and over-corrected, causing the car to go off the left side and down a 10 to 15-foot embankment, striking a tree.
Greene expects the investigation to last one to two weeks.