CHARLOTTE — A day after four men lost their lives in a fiery crash on Interstate 85 in University City, we’re learning about who the men were and how the crash happened.
Troopers told Channel 9 from their initial investigation, they believe a dump truck may have run out of gas before the truck that the victims were in plowed into it.
Channel 9’s Hunter Sáenz learned the men all worked together. He spoke with grieving family members of two of those men on Wednesday. The families were as stunned as they are broken and now, they’re hoping the community will rally around them.
“There are no words to explain the anguish,” Eric García said.
García is the cousin of 24-year-old Kevin Turcios, who died in the crash. Kevin’s uncles, Mercedes “Arturo” García and Edwin Orlando García Vigil were killed as well, along with Edwin’s brother-in-law, Miguel Ángel Portillo Arias.
State troopers said the truck they were traveling in hit the back of a dumpster truck that was improperly parked in the right lane of traffic on I-85. The charred remains of the truck could be seen from Chopper 9 Skyzoom.
Eric García said the four family members were on their way home from work when the crash happened. Now, he and his family are finding comfort in each other as they remember their loved ones.
Specifically - we learned what troopers believe may have caused a dump truck to become disabled in a lane of traffic just before the truck, that was carrying the four victims, plowed into it. Details at 5.— Hunter Sáenz (@Hunt_Saenz) January 11, 2023
“Kevin was a very energetic guy. He didn’t get into quarrels with people,” García said. “He was very loving, very playful.”
His family said Turcios had just built a home in his parents’ backyard and was set to move in this month. His father and brother were overcome with emotion when they spoke to Sáenz, as was Giovanni García, who is grieving the loss of his father, Arturo.
Giovanni García spoke to Sáenz in Spanish, but Telemundo Charlotte worked with Channel 9 to translate his answers into English.
“He was a hard worker,” Giovanni said. “…An honest and responsible person. To tell you the truth, he was one of a kind -- in every aspect.”
The victims’ family members all want answers and in the meantime, are asking for the community’s help.
“It’s never easy to lose a family member, better less, four,” Eric García said.
The families of the victims are now trying to pay for funerals. If you can help, they could use your giving heart.
The links to their GoFundMe pages are below:
Edwin García’s wife told Telemundo Charlotte she is seven months pregnant.
State troopers said it may be days or weeks before the investigation is complete, and that’s when we will know if charges or citations will be given. Troopers are still trying to learn if the dump truck driver was at the scene when the crash happened or if they left to get help. It’s also unclear if the dump truck’s hazard lights were on.
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