Prayers, relatives' inquiries follow deaths of immigrants in pickup
Published: July 25, 2012
GOLIAD, Texas (CNS) -- As more than 1,000 people sought information about whether their relatives were among the 15 people killed in a July 22 accident near Goliad, Trinitarian Father Stan DeBoe led prayers for the victims at an evening Mass July 24 at Santisima Trinidad Catholic Church in Victoria. Texas Department of Public Safety officers reported that a tire apparently came apart on the Ford 250 extended-cab pickup packed with 23 people, causing it to crash into two trees. Officers said the passengers were from Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras and are suspected to all be undocumented immigrants. The driver, who was killed, was Mexican. In a message on the website for the Diocese of Victoria, Father John Peters, vicar general, expressed "our deepest sympathy to the victims and their families, in the recent horrific traffic accident. We also lift our hearts and prayers to God, for those who have died in this tragedy," the message said. "All of us, regardless of nationality, race, creed or culture, are united in faith as brothers and sisters. Therefore, we join together in prayer to our loving God for strength and healing." Adrian Fulton of the Victoria Mortuary and Cremation Service, where 11 of the deceased were being held, told The Catholic Lighthouse, Victoria diocesan newspaper, that he has received more than 1,000 calls regarding the victims' possible identities, but that none of them had been identified as of July 24. Fulton said two of the dead are girls, ages about 8 and 10, and the rest ranged in age from about 25 to about 30.
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