Community in shock over Wilcox County wreck - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Community in shock over Wilcox County wreck

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By  Stephanie Springer  - bio | email

ABBEVILLE, GA (WALB) – Friday investigators returned to the scene of a horrible crash that killed five people including three young children Thursday afternoon.

A car and a state van collided head-on between Rochelle and Abbeville on Highway 280.

A woman, her three children and a passenger in the van they hit were all killed.

That small community is gripped by grief and a heartbroken husband and father will soon be home from Afghanistan.

Lee Daniels struggles with the tragic reality that his sister and her three young children are gone.

"I just remember being on the ground crying it just didn't seem like it was true like I was still in a dream," said Daniels.

His 37 year old sister April White, who goes by "Tina" and her three young children crashed head on into a Department of Human Resources van on Highway 280 yesterday.

"I've been through many difficult situations and a few tragedies but nothing like this," said Daniels.

Troopers say "Tina", 4 year old Jalyn, 7-year old Saunte' and 9-year old Jada were all killed in the crash. The passenger in the state van 68-year old Daniel Elders was also killed.

"I'll be okay for a few minutes and then something will trigger emotion and it will come down on us pretty hard," said Daniels.

Tina's two older children, 19 year old Kiswana and 17 year old Tre are trying to cope with the tragedy, but couldn't stay at her house Thursday night.

Her oldest Kitswana said she just expects them to be home," said Karen Davis.

"I kept them near me last night and tried to comfort them as much as possible and I think I needed them as much as they needed me," said Daniels.

Her best friend, Karen Davis has vowed to take responsibility for her two remaining children.

"Their mom trusted me to make me their God parent, to support them so I wanted them to know ill be here, said Karen Davis.

Family members say they are thankful the community has been so supportive during such a difficult time.

"When I got to the hospital last night to see more than 100 people outside the hospital made us feel good," said Daniels.

They want to make sure everyone remembers Tina for the great person she was and to know she and her three angels are in a better place now.

Friends say Tina and her husband Clarence were married for 10 years.

He's in the military in Afghanistan and will soon be on his way home.

The lone survivor of the crash is Brenda Gaines who was driving the DHR van.

She's hospitalized tonight in serious condition.

If you would like to help the family with burial expenses the family has set up a fund called "The Daniels Family Fundraiser,"

You can visit Wachovia or Rochelle State Bank to contribute.

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