Cooter baseball player Layton Robinson honored after accident takes his life

Layton Robinson competes in a high school baseball game for the Cooter Wildcats.

COOTER, Mo. - Friday evening students from Cooter High School gathered at Elk Chute Lodge in Gobler after months of having to postpone prom due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the evening was one they all enjoyed, it sadly turned to tragedy after an accident occurred just after the students ended the event and were leaving.

Just after 9 p.m. Friday evening, a truck with three of the students was traveling on Highway F, five miles west of Steele, when the vehicle struck another car, ran off the side of the road, overturned and hit a telephone pole.

First responders were nearby, as they had been helping to chaperone at the event. They arrived at the scene and immediately began working to help the two seriously injured young men. Unfortunately, despite all their efforts, Layton Robinson, 17, died from his injuries.

The young man was well known in the area not only for his talent on the baseball field but for his outgoing spirit, kind heart, and ability to encourage and cheer everyone around him.

Many of his fellow classmates were on the scene that evening. Counseling will be offered at the Cooter School on July 1 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for those who need help in dealing with the loss.

Friends and family have gathered to remember him through balloon launches and get-togethers. Businesses such as New Life Nutrition honored Layton by naming his favorite tea a #9, which was his baseball number and will be donating a portion of their proceeds from July 1 to the Cooter baseball program in his honor.

The Caruthersville Ball Association honored Layton Robinson by chalking the #9 on their fields earlier this week.

The family has asked in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Layton Robinson Memorial Scholarship Fund at Cooter Schools, P.O. Box 218, Cooter, MO 63839.

The other teens who were in the accident are home and recovering, but are greatly saddened by the loss of their dear friend.

A picture memorial video of Robinson is available here: Memorial Video

Online readers were invited to share their thoughts and memories of Layton. Here are a few of their responses:

"I have so many great memories of Layton! He had such a kind heart and sweet spirit. He was so fun and just being in the room with him made me smile. He sent me a Happy Mother’s Day and Happy Birthday text every year. He went out of his way to hug and talk to me. I’m so thankful that he got out of the food line at Prom to say “Hey Mrs. Lisa” and give me a hug! He would say “It’s ok Mrs. Lisa...I got this.” I didn’t always know exactly what “it” was, but I knew he was taking care of it. God knows I love that kid as my own and can’t imagine the days to come without him." - Lisa Austin

"Layton was an absolute ray of sunshine. He was always so positive, upbeat, and happy. If you were having a bad day, he was there to turn that around quickly. Layton was the ideal student, athlete, and friend. He was an encourager, a team leader, and a hard worker. He also made everyday fun! He is hands down the most respectful and kind young men I’ve ever known. I am blessed to have crossed paths with him." - Erica Paige Richardson

"Layton was the biggest sweetheart you would ever meet. He had a very contagious smile, and he would do anything to make you laugh. Every day, you would know when he walked into a room because he would always say one of his famous lines. “What it do, baby?”. Layton was an all-around amazing person, and there will never be anyone quite like him." - Addison Chidester

"Layton was the epitome of what it is to be a Cooter Wildcat ball player and student. Always very polite, respectful, and hardworking. Would do anything his coach asked of him. Never complained. I never heard a single negative thing about Layton. He was always smiling. One great kid, gone too soon. RIP #9." - Matt and Amy Fowler

"Everything about the sweet boy was special. He made you feel loved every time you saw him. And like Melissa said above, if you knew Layton you loved him. And he loved you. His love for his family and friends was beyond measure. And his sweet smile and rosy red cheeks were one in a million." - Heather Riggs

"I’ve seen on most everyone’s posts “If you knew Layton, you loved him.” This is 100% accurate. There was no “liking” him. You LOVED him. His love for God, his love for baseball, his work ethic in ANYTHING he was doing, his smile was contagious, his pretty blue eyes, the list goes on and on of things that made him special. Such an admirable young man. The world sure lost a diamond with this one." - Melissa Helton Barnes

"I had only known Layton personally for about a year, but he showed me how true it is that “if you knew him, you loved him.” No matter where we were, he would always go out of his way to say hi and see how I was if he saw me out somewhere. He will surely be missed." - Alli Thompson

New Life Nutrition honored Layton Robinson by naming his favorite tea a #9, which was his baseball number. Friends, family, and teammates came to join the celebration by ordering a #9 at New Life Nutrition in Caruthersville Monday.

"Layton was an outstanding young man! He got me back into playing baseball.. he told me we could workout every Saturday, to build me back up. I loved him, one of the best teammates ever. He was the big piece to the Cooter Wildcats. Gone, but not forgotten." #LLL - Justin Daniel

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