UNE student dies in single-car crash

A TEENAGE girl was returning to study at university before she was killed in an horrific accident near Glen Innes.

Jessica Lindley-Jones, 18, was just an hour from her home-away-from-home on campus at the University of New England in Armidale when her Volkswagen Beetle left the road and slammed into a tree.

Despite attempts to help by a passing motorist, the vehicle burst into flames on the New England Highway between Deepwater and Dundee.

Details of the highway tragedy were relayed yesterday after the Queensland Premier informed the parliament about the loss to a prominent minister’s family.

The 18-year-old was the stepdaughter of Assistant Health Minister, Dr Chris Davis.

In a statement to the house, Premier Campbell Newman said it was “a terrible tragedy.”

“This morning I must inform the house of the personal tragedy that has befallen the honourable member for Stafford, Chris Davis, Assistant Minister for Health,” Mr Newman told Parliament.

“He and his wife Kate have seen their daughter Jessica die in a traffic accident in the last 48 hours as she was returning to the University of New England for her studies,” he said.

Jessica lived on campus at the University of New England where she was in her second year of studying medicine.

Her friends have begun rallying around each other and it’s understood a private memorial service will be held in the college.

Tributes have been posted online for the Davis family as news of the tragedy filtered through Queensland and beyond.

In a visibly moving address, Mr Newman spoke of the “most tragic and awful event”. 

“Our hearts go out to them, our prayers are there for them and we are all there in solidarity in a very difficult time,” he said.

The university has declined to comment on the tragedy.

Jessica would have been 19 next month.

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