Friday, September 22, 2017 Elyria 78°


Third Columbia crash victim laid to rest


BRUNSWICK — Family was the recipe of Lexi Poerner’s life, the Rev. Bob Stec said Friday morning during her funeral Mass.

Hundreds packed St. Ambrose Catholic Church to pay their final respects to Poerner, 16, who was among four Brunswick High School students who died from injuries sustained in a Sunday car crash.

Multicolored construction-paper cards and banners filled two walls in the church. They said: “Forever in Our Hearts,” “Never Be Forgotten,” “Be Safe, Be Loved” and “Lots of Love from Brunswick.”

During the service, Stec touched on Poerner’s love of family and friends, camping, dancing and, like many teenage girls, shopping.

Stec mentioned how Poerner “sparkled at the prom” and how she enjoyed “shiny, spiritual things.”

She also “liked noodles and potatoes,” Stec said with a smile. “It was one of her favorite things to eat.”

This summer, Poerner’s grandmother was going to share her recipe for noodles and potatoes with her granddaughter, Stec said.

“I’d like to suggest she already has that recipe — the recipe of her life and good, strong family,” he said. “She loved all the things of family.”

Stec added: “When you mix all the ordinary ingredients together that came from her mom, dad and sister, it made a full life so wonderful.”

Outside the church, Brunswick junior Kelly Crabtree described Poerner as a great friend and an avid fundraiser for school events.

“She was gorgeous, outgoing and so nice,” Crabtree said prior to entering the church for Poerner’s service. “Seeing and talking to her in the hallways, I’ll really miss that.”

It’s been a rough week at school, Crabtree said.

“I cried nonstop the first two days,” she said.

Friday’s funeral Mass for Poerner was the third Stec presided over in two days for the Brunswick students.

Services for Blake Bartchak, 17, and Jeffrey Chaya, 18, were Thursday. They are buried beside one another at Resurrection Cemetery in Liverpool Township.

Poerner was buried Friday at Resurrection.

The service for the fourth crash victim, 18-year-old Kevin Fox, is 1 p.m. today at Cornerstone Chapel, 3939 Granger Road, Medina Township.

Chaya and Fox would have graduated Sunday, the day of the crash on Boston Road in Columbia Station.

Junior Julia Romito, 17, who also was in the car, is recovering at home.

“The impact they all had on our lives, you don’t realize it ’til they’re gone,” Crabtree said.

Contact Steve Grazier at (330) 721-4012 or

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