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Honeymooning couple helps Chesterfield family escape horrific I-95 crash

Posted at 12:42 PM, Sep 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-25 17:46:58-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- The morning after getting married in front of family and friends, newlyweds Kelly and Dave Brookins left town to begin their Florida honeymoon.

Several hours into their drive, tragedy struck.

"We were on 95 heading south, somewhere in South Carolina, and about two cars in front of us there was a head-on collision," Dave Brookins said, "A guy from the northbound lane had crossed over the grass median and hit a vehicle going in our direction head-on."

The Midlothian man pulled over to see what he could do to help.

"The first priority was making sure that we didn't add to that accident," Brookins said. "My wife immediately called 911. I jumped out [and joined] a few other bystanders rushing to them to try and check on them and get them out and get them to safety."

The driver of the Dodge Avenger that crossed the median did not survive the crash.

The family inside the Toyota Tacoma that the Avenger struck head-on did.

"When we got to the vehicle, it was just it was a mess in there. And there was just kind of bodies lying everywhere," Brookins said. "Our priority was trying to figure out how to get everyone out of the vehicle."

They started with the children and then the adults.

Aftermath of a crash on Interstate 95 in South Carolina on Sunday, September 20, 2020.

"She was calling out for her kids, and we're trying to keep her calm," Brookins recalled. "Someone was asking her name and what her kids' names were and I just caught this she was from Chester, which obviously the irony, you know, you're, six or eight hours from home and to have someone you know, that is in this horrific accident that lives 15 minutes from you was crazy."

A 12-year-old boy in the Tacoma suffered severe injuries, according to the Colleton County Fire-Rescue Department. He was flown to the hospital. His condition has not been released.

"My wife and I have been thinking about them and looking for updates on the story to make sure they're all okay," Brookins said. "We're praying for them and we hope that everything's OK with their family. If there's a way that we can help with anything, we'd be grateful for that."