Crash victim Taylor Mattson of Kensington described as an always kind, giving person

Mattson and Joseph Feldman, a 19-year-old from Brooten, were killed in a two-vehicle head-on crash April 22 in Douglas County.

Taylor Display.jpg
A display honoring the life of Taylor Mattson was put up at her school, West Central Area High School, after Mattson was killed a two-vehicle crash Thursday, April 22. (Contributed)

Taylor Mattson, who was one of two killed in a head-on crash Thursday, April 22, was described as a selfless person who always had a smile on her face.

The 16-year-old West Central Area High School sophomore from Kensington was one of those behind-the-scenes people who did so many things that contributed to the success of the boys basketball team, according to Kraig Hunter, WCA basketball coach.

"She was always just a kind, giving person.”

— Kraig Hunter

“She was one of my top managers ever,” said Hunter in an email on Monday to the newspaper. “I never had to worry about a thing. Taylor always had everything done and everything organized on game days.”


He said this past winter Mattson had asked him if she could make the posters for senior night. Hunter said she spent a lot of time making the “beautiful posters” that were hung up on senior night in the entrance to the gym.

“They were wonderful,” he said, adding that he had never seen Mattson ever do anything mean to anyone in school. “She was always just a kind, giving person.”

MattsonTaylor Obit.jpg
Taylor Mattson

Tammy Zeithamer, a family friend who was also Mattson’s hairstylist, said when Mattson was young, she was always so inquisitive and asked lots of questions.

“Last October, I put highlights in her hair for her cousin’s wedding and she was so excited,” said Zeithamer. “She loved her family fiercely and was always telling me what her brothers and cousins were up to.”

Zeithamer said Mattson was such a light in this world and that she will be dearly missed.

The crash

Mattson, along with the driver of the other vehicle, Joseph Feldman , 19, of Brooten, were killed on Highway 55 in Douglas County. Feldman was a 2020 Brooten-Belgrade-El Rosa graduate.


According to a report from the Minnesota State Patrol, Mattson was driving a 2006 Buick Lucerne east on Highway 55 near Kensington about 9:45 p.m. when it collided with a 1994 Ford F-150 driven by Feldman. Her airbag deployed while the airbag on Feldman's vehicle did not. According to the State Patrol report, Mattson was wearing her seat belt. The report said it was not known if Feldman was belted.

Road conditions were described as dry. No passengers were listed in either vehicle.

The crash closed down Highway 55 for nearly six hours and traffic was detoured around the site.

Mattson active in school activities

According to her obituary , Mattson, the daughter of Matthew and Kerri Mattson, was the WCA football and boys basketball manager, was a track athlete, involved in Family Career and Community Leaders of America and was a Sunday school helper at Kensington Covenant Church.

She worked at Main Street Athletics in Hoffman and also at Crossroads in Kensington and belonged to the Ben Wade Blazers 4-H Club.

Funeral services are scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Saturday, May 1, at the Kensington Covenant Church. Visitation will be Friday from 3 to 8 p.m. at the Erickson-Smith Funeral Home in Hoffman. Her funeral service will be livestreamed on the funeral home's website,

Celeste Edenloff is the special projects editor and a reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press. She has lived in the Alexandria Lakes Area since 1997. She first worked for the Echo Press as a reporter from 1999 to 2011, and returned in 2016 to once again report on the community she calls home.
What To Read Next
Get Local