BATESVILLE, Ark – A community is heartbroken after losing one of its youngest in an early morning crash in Batesville Thursday. 

A five-year-old and the driver of a Medicaid transport van were killed in the crash on Highway 167. A four-year-old who was also in the car was taken to Arkansas Children’s hospital with severe injuries. 

This week, it was learned that the two young boys were brothers. 5-year-old Christopher and 4-year-old Xavier. 

“I still haven’t been able to swallow it,” said Michelle Mckay, a family friend. “It bothers me every day.”  

Mckay used to work with the boy’s mother Rebecca at Dollar General. She says her kids have been friends with the family for years. 

“Couldn’t ask for sweeter boys,” said Mckay. 

She found out about the crash from a former coworker Thursday afternoon. 

“She was the one that told me that it was Rebecca’s kids,” said Mckay. 

Mckay says she has spoken with the family who is still trying to process everything. For the past couple of days, they have been at Children’s as Xavier recovers. 

According to Mckay, the 4-year-old broke both his arms and legs and suffered from a brain bleed. 

“I don’t know how [Rebecca] going deal with it or cope with it,” said Mckay. “I don’t know if it’s really dawned on her yet exactly what’s happening.”  

Ashley Mason is also a friend of the family. She says her family is mourning the loss of Christopher. She says he was always so happy and a joy to be around.

“His laugh and smile were so contagious,” said Mason. 

She says she is sending thoughts to the family as Xavier continues to recover. 

Mckay says the family has a long road ahead but that the Batesville community will be there to help them along the way. 

We have reached out to family and friends of the driver who was killed Thursday. We have not heard back.