7-year-old hit, killed at Mt. Juliet Christmas parade will be honored at this year's event

Posted at 11:56 AM, Dec 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-11 12:56:46-05

MT. JULIET, Tenn. (WTVF) — The sound of cheer and laughter still don't make a trip to Charlie Daniels Park easy for Art and Jana Frensley. Nearly a year ago, their 7-year-old son, Rowan, died at the Mt. Juliet Christmas parade when he was hit by a trailer.

"We never would imagine it would happen to one of ours,” said Jana.

"With losing a child, you try to remember every little moment you can with him because there’s no more in this life,” said Art.

A blue bench, which was dedicated to Rowan, also has his picture but so many more tell his story.

"Rowan would light up the room when he would walk in. He always had some sort of humor and wits. He was caring, giving and loving [and] would help others,” said Jana.

And it'll be told every year now at the Mt. Juliet Christmas Parade.

"We were very surprised but also very happy that our community could think of something like that,” said Art.

From now on, the winner of the best float will get the "Rowan Ace Frensley Award."

"He loved that parade and he was in it several years and it was something he looked forward to,” said Art.

Come Christmas time, Rowan's name will always be part of this tradition.

"It makes us feel great. Everyone needs more positivity in their life,” said Art.

Positivity -- something both Art and Jana learned from their son.

“We will focus on the good always and we will help and will love and focus on our faith and Lord Jesus,” said Jana.

Rowan’s Toy Drive will be held at the Rutland Place Senior Living in Mt. Juliet on December 17 from 4 to 6 PM. You can also bring non-perishable foods there for the Mount Juliet Help Center.