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5-year-old Ulises Rodriguez Montoya identified as student killed in Hays CISD bus crash

Five-year-old Ulises Rodriguez Montoya was killed in a Hays CISD bus crash on Friday.
Five-year-old Ulises Rodriguez Montoya was killed in a Hays CISD bus crash on Friday.

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Ulises Rodriguez Montoya, a 5-year-old Tom Green Elementary School student, was identified Monday as one of two people killed in a Hays CISD school bus crash Friday afternoon.

Ryan Wallace, 33, who was driving a car behind the bus, was also killed.

Ulises was described as a happy, loving child who liked to share stories with his friends and family.

"He had a talent for drawing and his favorite thing to draw was dinosaurs," Naira Solís Shears, his pre-K bilingual teacher, said in a statement released by the school district. "He always had a dinosaur drawn on all the assignments he turned in."

The bus was returning from a field trip to a zoo in Bastrop County when the driver of a concrete truck veered into its lane on SH 21.

Forty-four students and 11 adult chaperones were on the bus, according to a statement from Hays CISD. All students had been released from the hospital as of Monday afternoon. One staff member was still hospitalized.

In a statement Saturday, Hays CISD said the bus was not equipped with seat belts. The Texas Department of Public Safety is investigating whether a seat belt would have prevented Ulises' death.

About 14% of Hays CISD school buses that travel daily routes don't have seat belts. Several new buses will replace the old ones in coming weeks, according to a statement from the district released Monday. After that, all 109 buses with daily routes will have seat belts.

Hays CISD has an additional 87 buses used for other purposes, including field trips, but only half of them have seat belts. The district is considering seeking bond funds to replace those buses.

Ulises' family has launched a GoFundMe page for his funeral expenses. Funeral and memorial services are pending.

The family said they are grateful for the community's support as they process his death.

A former Tom Green Elementary teacher, Molly Andrews, has also launched a GoFundMe to help students and staff with expenses related to the crash. The account has already raised $71,000.

Maya Fawaz is KUT's Hays County reporter. Got a tip? Email her at Follow her on Twitter @mayagfawaz.
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