Tag: Vista

Vista children killed in wrong-way crash on the way home from vacation

Zach and Lili Homant, their mother and their grandmother had just spent two weeks together in Ohio and were making the long drive to the children’s Vista home when a wrong-way driver smashed into their car.

Zach and the two women died on impact. Lili died on her way to a hospital.

Now, friends of the family are trying raise enough money so the children’s father and step-mother can fly them home and bury them.

The crash happened about 1:30 a.m. Saturday on Interstate 40 in Canadian County, Oklahoma, local media outlets reported.

The family was headed west in a 2003 Hyundai when an eastbound Jeep smashed into the car and overturned. The Hyundai ended up in the center median where it caught fire. Oklahoma Highway Patrol officials told reporters that the Jeep’s driver, identified as Ashley Ricks, may have been impaired at the time of the crash. According to 911 calls, the 33-year-old had been driving the wrong way for more than 10 miles.

Ricks, the only one to survive, is in critical condition at a hospital.

Friends of the family created a GoFundMe soon after they learned of the crash to help pay for funeral costs, which would include flying the bodies back to California.

“Our hopes are this fund will pay for the costs to bring his family home from Oklahoma, and burial expenses,” wrote fund organizer and family friend Jean Ball. “I know right now they can’t eat or sleep. They can’t look at the kid’s bedrooms and belongings. I can’t even imagine my whole reason for living, my entire family gone in an instant.”

The children live full-time with their father and step-mother, but had taken a vacation with their mother to visit their grandmother in Ohio. Ball wrote in the GoFundMe that the two had called their dad every day while in Ohio to share their experiences. Both were ready to come home and see their dad and their friends.

But Zach, who loved playing video games, and Lili, who enjoyed her bike and anything else that was pink or purple, never made it.

“The children had such bright futures,” Bell wrote. “How to navigate life after this is hard to fathom.”

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