Georgia educator killed in crash with man driving stolen car, police say

The Bartow County school system is mourning the loss of a longtime paraprofessional who was killed in a crash Saturday morning.

Longtime educator Angela Townsend was driving when her car was hit by a driver trying to escape Georgia troopers, police said. (Bartow County Schools)

State troopers say 55-year-old Angela Townsend was trying to turn left at the intersection of Georgia 140 and Highway 41 when her car was hit by a speeding driver trying to escape law enforcement.

Townsend worked for over 20 years at White Elementary School as a special needs paraprofessional, kindergarten paraprofessional, pre-K paraprofessional, and after-school teacher. She also worked at Cass High School.

“Mrs. Townsend was such an amazing part of the White Elementary Family,” said White Elementary School Principal Amy Heater. “She was truly a devoted staff member who put the needs of our children before her very own. She always had an amazing smile, sense of humor, and a determined, unbreakable spirit. She is going to be missed dearly. We would like the community to keep our school and Mrs. Townsend’s family in their thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.”

“She was one of my favorites and I know everybody in the school district loved her," said student Dylan Lee.

"In the blink of an eye, it happened. We’re just praying for the faculty, the students and her family," parent Tiffany Walker remarked.

RELATED: GSP: Man driving stolen car causes deadly crash after police chase

Bartow County Schools released a statement on Monday which read in part:

“Throughout Mrs. Townsend’s influential teaching career at White Elementary School and Cass High School, she earned the respected titles of special needs paraprofessional, kindergarten paraprofessional, and most recently, pre-K paraprofessional and after-school teacher at White Elementary School. Mrs. Townsend spent all but two years at White Elementary School.

“As a Warrior, Mrs. Townsend helped cultivate a positive school climate and culture that is well-known for its focus on interpersonal relationships. Through tears and laughter, White Elementary School Principal Amy Heater notes Mrs. Townsend’s fun-loving personality that made students feel safe, supported, and engaged. Her meaningful activities and hands-on opportunities for learning routinely involved a memorable skit or dance”

A school-led tribute to Townsend will take place on Monday. If you would like to contribute a favorite memory of Townsend, please email Heater at

Troopers charged 20-year-old Christopher Tyler Parker of Blountsville, Alabama in the crash with felony fleeing and attempting to elude, felony vehicular homicide, felony receiving stolen property and felony bringing stolen property across state lines. 

The Georgia State Patrol says Parker was driving a car stolen from his grandmother.