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US 'Words Cannot Explain' Site of Alabama Crash That Killed 9 Kids, Youth Ranch CEO Says

00:00  22 june  2021
00:00  22 june  2021 Source:   newsweek.com

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Camp Hill, Alabama (CNN) Nine children and one adult were killed in an accident involving multiple vehicles on Interstate 65 in Butler County, Alabama , on Saturday, according to Butler County Coroner Wayne Garlock. Eight of the children killed , ranging in age from 4 to 17, were in a vehicle from the The youth ranch provides a home for neglected or abused school-age children, according to the Alabama Sheriffs Youth Ranches , the nonprofit that manages the Tallapoosa County girls ranch and others across the state. A 29-year-old father and his 9 -month-old daughter who were in another

" Words cannot explain what I saw," Smith said of the accident site , which he visited Saturday. "We love these girls like they're our own children." "Butler County has had one of the most terrible traffic accidents," county Sheriff Danny Bond wrote on Facebook, adding: "I believe is the worst ever in our county." Tallapoosa County Girls Ranch is one of four youth ranches led by the Christian organization Alabama Sheriffs Youth Ranches that provides a home for abused, neglected or homeless school-age girls. It’s supported by the sheriffs of Lee, Chambers and Tallapoosa counties.

After eight children from a youth ranch for the abused and neglected died during a van crash Saturday, ranch CEO Michael Smith said "words cannot explain" what he saw. The children, aged four to 17, were traveling back from a beach trip to the Gulf Shores when their van got caught in a wreck on Interstate 65 caused by Tropical Storm Claudette.

People wearing masks walk with an umbrella during heavy rain and wind in Times Square as Tropical Storm Isaias makes landfall during Phase 4 on August 04, 2020 in New York City. The fourth phase allows outdoor arts and entertainment, sporting events without fans and media production. © Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images People wearing masks walk with an umbrella during heavy rain and wind in Times Square as Tropical Storm Isaias makes landfall during Phase 4 on August 04, 2020 in New York City. The fourth phase allows outdoor arts and entertainment, sporting events without fans and media production.

Smith, of the Tallapoosa County Girls Ranch, had been traveling back from the trip in a separate van and visited the site of the crash later on Saturday. Wayne Garlock, coroner for Butler County, said that the wreck likely occurred when vehicles hydroplaned during the storm.

Alabama crash: 9 children, 1 adult killed in interstate accident involving Alabama Girls Ranch vehicle

  Alabama crash: 9 children, 1 adult killed in interstate accident involving Alabama Girls Ranch vehicle Nine children and one adult were killed in an accident on Interstate 65 in Butler County, Alabama, on Saturday, according to Butler County Coroner Wayne Garlock. © Provided by CNN Eight of the children killed, ranging in age from 4 to 17, were in a vehicle from the Tallapoosa County Girls Ranch, Garlock said. The youth ranch provides a home for neglected or abused school-age children, according to the Alabama Sheriffs Youth Ranches, the nonprofit that manages the Tallapoosa County girls ranch and others across the state. A father and a 9-month-old girl were also killed in another vehicle, Garlock said.

PICTURED: Alabama firefighter, 29, who died alongside baby daughter after 15-car pile-up that also saw eight foster children aged between four and 17 killed in bus fireball - with investigators blaming the tragedy on Tropical Storm Claudette. Cody Fox, a 29 year-old firefighter, and his nine month-old Youth ranches CEO Michael Smith told The Associated Press the director of the Tallapoosa County ranch survived the crash and was hospitalized in Montgomery. At least one of the dead was a child of the director, Smith said . Smith broke down in tears as he described the incident as 'the worst tragedy

With Alabama drenched by tropical storms, a tragic road crash has claimed the lives of a father, his infant daughter and eight deprived schoolgirls cared for by a charity group. “Our ranch has suffered great loss,” the organization said late on Saturday night. “Please send prayers our way as we navigate this difficult time.” Tropical Storm Claudette weakened to a tropical depression as it tracked across Alabama on Saturday. However, the 10 road crash victims weren’t the only lives claimed by Claudette.

The van's only survivor was Ranch Director Candice Gulley, who was pulled from the wreck by a bystander and is now in stable condition at a Montgomery hospital.

Apart from the youth ranch children, the crash also killed Gulley's two children, four ranch residents and two ranch guests, as well as a 29-year old man and his 9-month old daughter who were traveling in a separate vehicle.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Elsewhere, a 24-year-old man and a 3-year-old boy were killed Saturday when a tree fell on their house just outside Tuscaloosa, and a 23-year-old Fort Payne woman died after her car ran off the road into a swollen creek, authorities said.

News outlets reported that search dogs located the body of a man believed to have fallen into the water during flash flooding in Birmingham.

12 dead in Alabama due to Claudette, including 9 children in car crash; storm to strengthen on way to East Coast

  12 dead in Alabama due to Claudette, including 9 children in car crash; storm to strengthen on way to East Coast At least 12 died in Alabama after Tropical Storm Claudette hit the South, including nine children in a car crash.Ten people, including nine children, died in a multi-vehicle collision on Saturday that was likely caused by storm-related hydroplaning, Butler County Coroner Wayne Garlock told local media. Garlock did not immediately respond to a voicemail left Sunday.

10 killed , including 9 kids , in Alabama car crash during tropical storm. Ten people, including nine The eight girls killed in the van were returning to a youth ranch operated by the Alabama Sheriffs Alabama – Ten people, including nine children, have been killed after in a crash involving 18

Officials in the Alabama community said the fatal crash was the worst they've seen. Alabama deadly crash : 9 children, 1 adult killed in accident involving Tallapoosa County Girls Ranch vehicle. 9 Kids , 1 Adult Dead in Alabama Car Crash That Involved Girls Ranch Vehicle: 'The Most The eight girls killed in the van were returning to a youth ranch operated by the Alabama Sheriffs Association

By Monday morning, Claudette had maximum sustained winds of 40 mph (65 kph). The storm was about 90 miles (145 kilometers) south of Ocean City, Maryland, and moving east-northeast at 28 mph (45 kph), the National Hurricane Center said.

The system was expected to pass near or south of Nova Scotia before dissipating late Tuesday.

About 1 to 2 inches (3 to 5 centimeters) of rain was expected in the Carolinas before Claudette moved out to sea.

The annual trip to the beach is the highlight of the year at the ranch. It's a new experience for many of the girls, a worker said. Writing on social media ahead of the trip, the employee said the organization wanted "our girls to be able to enjoy all of the things that regular families get to do on vacation" and later posted a photo of girls standing on the beach under a blue sky looking out at the waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

Volunteers delivered food Monday at the ranch, on a section of a two-lane county highway lined with wooden fences painted white. Sheriff's cars and orange traffic barrels blocked the road leading to the area where girls live in homes with their house parents.

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The eight girls killed in the van were returning to a youth ranch operated by the Alabama Sheriffs Association near 10 killed , including 9 kids , in Alabama car crash during tropical storm. Alabama – Ten people, including nine children, have been killed after in a crash involving 18 vehicles in the

“ Words cannot explain what I saw,” Smith said of the accident site , which he visited Saturday. “We love these girls like they’re our own children.” Aaron Sanders, who worked with Fox at the emergency management agency in Marion County, described him as a "great guy and we're really going to miss him." Tropical Storm Claudette demolished dozens of homes across Alabama and killed two others. As of Sunday morning, Tropical Depression Claudette took a total of 12 lives in Alabama . In addition to the 10 people who died in the two-vehicle crash on Saturday, a tree fell on a house near the

Students and community members gathered for a prayer service Sunday at Reeltown High School, the school the girls attended. One of the surviving girls, who was traveling in a separate vehicle, wept as she spoke about her "little sisters," al.com reported.

"When people hear about the ranch, they usually assume that the girls have done something wrong or bad to get there. But that's not the case," said the teen, who was not identified because she is in state custody.

"These girls have been through so much, and they were such strong, wonderful, kind family members, and it was my privilege and my honor to be their big sister," she said.

She encouraged mourners "to look at somebody and tell them you love them and hold them and squeeze them tight."

"I will never, ever in my life take life for granted because it is so precious. Love is the biggest thing," she said.

The coroner said the location of the wreck is "notorious" for hydroplaning, as the northbound highway curves down a hill to a small creek. Traffic on that stretch of I-65 is usually filled with vacationers driving to and from Gulf of Mexico beaches on summer weekends.

Alabama crash: A Tennessee father, his infant daughter and eight other children were killed in a multi-vehicle crash

  Alabama crash: A Tennessee father, his infant daughter and eight other children were killed in a multi-vehicle crash A Tennessee father and his infant daughter were among 10 people -- nine of whom were children -- killed in a fiery multi-vehicle crash on an Alabama highway this weekend. © CNN Ten people died in a multi-vehicle crash in Butler County, Alabama on Saturday. Cody Fox, 29, of New Hope, Tennessee, and his nine-month-old daughter were identified in a press release issued by the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) Sunday night.The other victims in the crash were children aged between three and 17, who were traveling in a vehicle belonging to a ranch for neglected or abused school-age children, authorities said.

The National Transportation Safety Board tweeted that it was sending 10 investigators to the area Sunday.

Related Articles

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  • Storm Claudette Likely Behind Death of 10, Including 9 Children, in Alabama Vehicle Crash
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  • Alligator Warning Issued as Tropical Storm Claudette Thrashes Gulf Coast

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'It's a family': Wreck shatters life's work at girls home .
CAMP HILL, Ala. (AP) — Caring for abused and neglected girls is Candice Gulley’s life work, and that's what she was doing when she helped load vans from an Alabama children’s home for a trip to the beach. The kids walked on the sand, ate seafood and threw an early, dinosaur-themed fourth birthday party for her son, Ben, during a week on the coast. With Gulley behind the wheel of a van headed back to the home as Tropical Storm Claudette blew through the South, the trip ended in a cataclysmic crash. The van was caught in a chain-reaction wreck on a rain-slick interstate that involved 17 vehicles, seven of which caught fire — some reduced to twisted, burned-out hulks.

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