Lovina Eicher On The Road Accident Which Claimed A 4-Year-Old Girl’s Life

Last week brought the tragic news of a 4-year-old girl killed crossing the road while walking between events on an Amish wedding day. Amish Kitchen columnist Lovina Eicher has roots in the Adams County, Indiana Amish settlement where this happened, and the family involved are relatives on her husband’s side.

In her latest column, Lovina gives more details on the incident. Little Barbara Graber was walking with older sisters at the time:

Foremost on my mind today is my husband Joe’s cousin Carolyn and Jonas Jr. and family. Their 4-year-old daughter Barbara was laid to rest yesterday. Such a tragedy — a life so young was taken, but God makes no mistakes. That is the only comfort sometimes, knowing he needed another angel.

Little Barbara and several other little girls crossed the highway going from the wedding reception to the wedding church across the road. These little girls were safely across walking behind their big sisters. They decided they wanted to go back to the reception instead and turned to go back across the highway before the older sisters saw them. The last one across was Barbara and she was hit by a passing vehicle.

Oh, the pain of seeing your child lifeless. Our hearts go out to Barbara’s family and to the 82-year-old man who was driving the vehicle. As with son-in-law Mose’s accident there are so many “what ifs.” Only God knows why, and it was his timing for their death. Our sympathy to the family.

Sister Verena, sister Emma and Jacob, daughter Susan and children, and Joe and I traveled the two hours to attend the visitation and viewing for Barbara. It is a comfort to have family and friends show their support at a time of loss of a dear loved one.

A heartbreaking incident for all those involved. Lovina has said what needs to be said here. It appears the driver was at no fault in this incident; at least I have heard nothing suggesting that.

The only thing I might note here is that especially with young Amish children, where the awareness of danger is not as ingrained as with older ones, I can see this sort of thing happening on the road.

It sounds like the little girls simply decided to cross back to the other side, without informing their older sisters walking ahead of them. When there are little ones involved – and young Amish children do walk along the roadside in communities all across America – you have a greater chance of this sort of thing happening.

So it may be wise to slow down even more than you might otherwise, and give a wider berth, when possible. And I don’t mention this to suggest the vehicle driver is at fault – he may very well have been driving as safely as possible, and absent any other information we ought assume so.

Just as something to consider when passing groups of Amish people, and children especially. So for what it’s worth, consider this post, on an incident no one wished ever happened, a sort of Amish safety PSA.

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      extra care should be taken when driving on hiway 27 between portland and decatour


    2. C J

      4 Yr Old Death

      I pray for the family in the lost of the little one. This is a reminder that every one needs to pay closer attention and go slower whenever children are walking or are close to road. More attention and slower may well prevent another tragic death.

      1. Sr. Bernadette Ward

        re; a 4 year old girl's life

        To whom this may concern: I wanted to let you know that I agree with
        everything you wrote in your comment. Because no matter where you live in Amish Country or non-Amish country you still need to watch for people of all ages crossing a road. Especially young children who don’t realize to look both ways when crossing a road.

        Another thing: My sympathy & prayers go out to this Amish family who lost
        their child in this sad accident. May God watch over them and give them peace. Because their child is an angel of god.

        Plus to let you know I am not Amish. I am a Benedictine Religious Sister.Who cares about people of all ages. It doesn’t matter what religion they are; they are human and they all need prayers.

        Prayers always,
        Sr. Bernadette Ward

    3. Death

      Dear Lovina, death was brought about by Adam’s sin. It is Satan who wants people to not worship God. James 1:13 says “When under trial, let no one say: “I am being tried by God,” For with evil things God cannot be tried, nor does he himself try anyone. God created angels a long time ago. He doesn’t need any more. He has 10,000 times 10,000. The hope is for everlasting life as Jesus said in Matthew 5:5. Jesus was quoting from Psalm 37:9-11. The hope is stated by Jesus in John 5:28,29 where he will resurrect our dead loved ones back to earth, after he has destroyed the wicked. I mean no disrespect, but the hope of the Kingdom government,with Christ as King should be every Chrisitan’s hope. Thanks, I appreciated the information about your family and you have my sincere sympathy.
      Sandy Kennedy

    4. Beverly

      Little Barbara

      Any death of a young child is the most heartbreaking!

      Here is my suggestion and perspective-

      The Amish would do well, by teaching their children (if they haven’t already) when traveling (walking)in a group of older and younger children..(unaccompanied by a adult) that when needing to cross roads, highways etc there would be a older child who would be in the “lead” with the younger ones situated in the middle following and a older child holding up the rear. The younger ones holding hands wouldn’t hurt..this is also a school policy that most grade schools practice.

      Woulda, shoulda, coulda sadly isn’t going to change what has already taken place; however. it is a recognized safety practice designed to help safe guard young children.

      (Becoming all “churchy” and quoting “bibical” references helps no one! I’m pretty sure, most Amish are already well versed in knowledge of what the bible contains)
      My sincere condolences to little Barbara’s family and friends in their loss! ;*-(

    5. JT


      Never ceases to amaze me when we are out and about in Amish country how the local English tend to drive like idiots around them! We do business with several different groups and am shocked by this, it seems as if it is purposeful and intentional.

    6. Bert


      as ive stated in other posts on this type of topic for the buggies i give plenty of distance even if it means being late for things for pedestrians which i see all the time i drive on the double yellow line praying for lovinas family also

    7. Cynthia Taylor

      Little Barbara

      I am so sorry for the loss of this precious little girl. I am praying that people will be careful an slow down when you see these things going on with families. Praying also for the family.many blessings.