Late Hawkins High School student called ‘creative, talented’ by former teacher

Hawkins High School student killed in 2-vehicle crash in Wood County.
Published: Jun. 5, 2023 at 11:02 AM CDT|Updated: Jun. 5, 2023 at 9:56 PM CDT
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WOOD COUNTY, Texas (KLTV) - A Hawkins ISD student was killed in a multi-vehicle crash in Wood County.

According to a preliminary report by the Texas Department of Public Safety, around 12:55 p.m. Saturday on a private road near Farm to Market Road 14, a 2001 Ford Ranger and 2003 Chevrolet Silverado collided as the vehicles were traveling in opposite directions. The report states Jaykob Dodd, 16, of Hawkins, drifted across the centerline of the road in the Ford Ranger and struck the Chevrolet Silverado head-on.

Dodd was pronounced dead at the scene. Sabino Santoy, 65, and Maria Santoy, 63, both of Ore City, were both transported to UT Health Hospital in Tyler for treatment of their injuries.

KLTV spoke with Dodd’s Digital Art and Engineering Teacher about her award-winning student.

Elizabeth White didn’t just teach junior Jaykob Dodd digital art; she also taught him engineering.

“He was really creative. He was actually in the engineering pathway, not the arts. So that was his forte, was engineering. But he was very good at any kind of digital drawing. Auto Cad, he was excellent at Auto Cad, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop. He picked up anything on the computer very, very quickly,” White said.

She said he was a quick learner.

“He was always very good in his class. And in the class that I taught him for digital media, we had many projects, but this was a project he won a Scholastic Award for. It was towards the end of the Year,” White said.

East Texas News’ Bob Hallmark had done a story about Dodd on March 31 about just that. Jacob explained what he did to create the winning image.

“Started off just merging pinecones into people. It kind of looks like Mother and Father Nature and created, I think, a beautiful picture with one person having pinecones for hair. The other has a waterfall on her hand,” Dodd said.

White said after the class images were created there was a critique.

“And when it came to his turn I was like, wow who did that? It’s really good,” White said.

Good enough to take gold at the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards along with the likes of Andy Warhol, Stephen King and Robert Redford. This week Dodd was to travel to New York for the awards ceremony.

“It’s at Carnegie Hall,” White said.

Winning art will be displayed at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. White said he could have gone into engineering or computer graphics or both.

“He had a lot of options. He was a very talented young man,” White said.

Although on summer break, Hawkins ISD is offering grief counseling to staff and students for the rest of the week.

Hawkins ISD issued the following statement about Dodd:

“We send our deepest sympathies and condolences to the family of Jaykob Dodd. We stand by you during this difficult time, and our hearts go out to everyone in his family and our HISD school family. HISD will have counselors on hand tomorrow for any student and staff in need. Whether you need someone to talk to or just someone to listen, we are here for you.”

KLTV's Jamey Boyum spoke with Hawkins High School Engineering and Digital Art Teacher Elizabeth White about one of her students, Jaykob Dodd.

+ Hawkins student artist wins prestigious Scholastic award previously won by Warhol, Redford