Third-grader had talent for fiddling

Century School student dies in horseback riding accident

A vacation trip to Central America turned into tragedy for an 8-year-old Eudora boy who died from injuries suffered in a horseback-riding accident.

Henery Reed Cromwell and his parents, Aron Cromwell and Hannah Fritzel Cromwell, were on a spring break vacation last week when the accident occurred March 19 in Vijagua de Upala, Costa Rica. The boy fell off a horse and hit his head, according to OIJ, the Costa Rican equivalent of the FBI. He was taken to a Upala hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Upala is in the northwestern Costa Rican province of Guanacaste.

Henery Cromwell, a third-grader at Century School in Lawrence, was riding horses with his parents when his horse ran away with him, said the boy’s grandfather Joel Fritzel, of Lawrence.

“He took off up in front of everybody, and the horse took off with him,” Fritzel said.

Henery Cromwell loved playing the violin and especially enjoyed playing it fiddle-style, those who knew him said. He played fiddle with the Americana Music Academy.

“He was an exceptional fiddle player,” said Diane Gillenwater, an instructor who gave fiddle lessons to Henery Cromwell.

“He was an extremely bright young man for his age,” Gillenwater said. “I could play something for him and he could play it back to me. He was at prodigy level.”

Henery also loved reading Greek mythology and catching animals.

“He seemed like a pretty well-rounded little guy,” said Thom Alexander, director of the music academy. “He was very talented for his age.”

Fritzel added, “He was very advanced in his thinking. He excelled at almost everything.”