A Concord teen lost control of his vehicle Saturday on Rocky River Road and was fatally injured.
David Lee Fitts, 18, was driving alone on Rocky River between Drake Mill and Rocky Meadows lanes in Concord around 1:10 p.m., according to a report from the N.C. Highway Patrol.
He was headed home from a friend’s house to get ready for work, his mother, Jessica Robinson Fitts, said Sunday.
His Toyota Corolla ran off the right side of the road, according to the trooper’s report. Fitts apparently tried to correct his position by steering to the left. He crossed the center line and ran off the left side of the road.
The vehicle went down an embankment and came to rest in a wooded area when it struck a tree. No other vehicles were involved, according to the report.
Fitts was not wearing a seat belt, and speed was likely a factor, according to the trooper’s report. He was taken to Carolinas HealthCare Northeast but did not survive his injuries.
Fitts was a 2015 graduate of Central Cabarrus High School, where his interests were math and carpentry. He also had a passion for recreational basketball, skateboarding and snowboarding, said his younger brother, Christian Fitts, 16.
But David Fitts was unhappy with college life and returned home after one month at Gardner-Webb University in Boiling Springs, his mother said.
He got into trouble around that time, she said, but was working hard to overcome a November 2015 conviction in Cabarrus County on a misdemeanor charge of possession of marijuana.
Fitts had been sentenced to 12 months of probation, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.
More recently, he and Christian, a sophomore, worked together at a Chick-fil-A restaurant.
“He wanted to clear his record up,” Jessica Fitts said. “He went to college and got a little wild. He came home to fix it. He came home to get closer to family and friends.”
His mixed-breed rescue dog, Ellis, seemed to suffer while David Fitts was away. They were as close as ever once he returned.
Pranks and jokes between the two brothers continued as well, Jessica Fitts said.
“Everybody was glad to have him home,” she recalled. “As much as we want to see our kids go off to college, we were glad to see him home.”
Karen Sullivan: 704-358-5532, @Sullivan_kms