Jenks Community Providing Free Counseling After Fatal Crash
JENKS, Oklahoma - A community is working together to provide free grief counseling for friends of a Jenks mother and three students who died in a car crash.
The kids involved in the crash were a very loved part of the Tulsa Soccer Club and the girls coach, Matt Griffin, said they're trying to offer up as much support as they possibly can.
"They meant so much, not just to the team, but to the whole club," Griffin said.
Griffin said Lizzie Edwards, Izzy Kitterman, and Lauren Van Horn were the ultimate teammates.
"Very good leaders, had tons of friends. Everybody liked them," he said. "I just feel very fortunate and blessed to have been a part of their lives over the last two years."
Griffin said he and his entire team spent the day at the hospital Tuesday.
"These three that were in this accident, they're all so very special," he said.
Izzy and Lauren are in critical condition. Lizzie passed away Wednesday morning. She had severe brain damage after Monday afternoon's crash and had to be kept on life support.
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says 40-year-old Erin Van Horn, her 10-year-old son Zach and 11-year-old Beck Kitterman, were killed when her GMC Yukon crashed into a semi on I-35 south of Purcell Monday as she drove back from Turner Falls.
We don't yet know why the car crashed into the semi.
Now, the Tulsa Soccer Club and Jenks Middle School are providing professional counseling to anyone who needs it.
"I think that people need to emotionally breathe. Their heads are so full of loss and trauma and just their world being blown apart," Counselor Chris King said.
Griffin said, "When you're dealing with 12, 13-year-old girls, you just never know how they're going to take something like this."
The counseling sessions will be offered free of charge as a small way to help the grieving community start to heal.
Group counseling through TSC starts Thursday afternoon at 1:00 at the All Star Sports Complex.
Jenks Middle School at 3019 East 101st Street will have counselors available from noon to 3:00 Thursday afternoon.
There will be a candlelight vigil Wednesday at 8:45 p.m. at the Metro Tulsa Soccer Club complex at 3316 East 105th Street. They are asking people to arrive by 8:30 p.m. on the north side of campus.
Jenks Public Schools issued the following statement:
"We are deeply saddened by the sudden passing of Jenks’ parent Erin Van Horn and two Jenks Public Schools’ students. Our most heartfelt condolences are extended to all families affected by this tragic accident, and our thoughts are with those students who are recovering both mentally and physically from their injuries. We wish them all a quick and complete recovery, and we urge everyone to respect the privacy of the families during this difficult time. Because law enforcement officials have not released the names of the students, and out of respect to the families, Jenks Public Schools will not be referencing or discussing the names of those students involved."
GoFundMe accounts set up for the families of the victims.