MDS rescue team responds to fellow church members’ fatal accident in Arkansas

After a July 10 accident that killed two brothers on their family farm in northwest Arkansas, Mennonite Disaster Service extended condolences and prayers to the MDS Search and Rescue Team, which responded on the scene in their own close-knit community.

Alex Hostetler, 20, and his brother, Layne, 15, died trying to extricate a steer from a pond during a cattle roundup on the 1,000-acre farm owned by their father. Their sister, Eileen, 18, was injured trying to help her brothers.

MDS Search and Rescue team leader Ted Hostetler responded to the scene with 19 other team members. The boys’ father, Louis Hostetler, is Ted’s second cousin, and they all attend Bethel Amish Mennonite Church in Berryville.

“We’ve known them all our lives,” said Ted, who asked for prayers for his team, the family and the wider church family. “We are hurting right now. . . . We have worked many scenes similar to this, but never when it was one of our own.”

Funeral services were held July 14 at Bethel Amish Mennonite Church.

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