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Killeen HS alumni identified among 9 dead after major crash in west Texas

Coach Tyler James was one of the nine who died in the collision Tuesday night.

ANDREWS COUNTY, Texas — A Killeen High School alumni was identified as part of the nine people who died after a major collision in Andrews County, Texas on Tuesday. 

Tyler James was a product of Killeen ISD. He attended Clifton Park Elementary, Nolan Middle School and graduated from Killeen High School in 2014. He was starting his first season as head coach of the men's and women's golf program at the University of The Southwest in Hobbs, New Mexico, according to university's website.

According to Texas DPS, the fatal crash happened at 8:17 p.m. on FM 1788 north of SH 115.

A Ford passenger van that was registered by USW was traveling north, while a Dodge 2500 pickup was traveling south.

For unknown reasons, the pickup truck drove into the van head-on causing both vehicles to catch on fire and burn.

DPS has identified the occupants killed in the crash.

Henrich Siemens, 38, of Seminole was driving the truck. His passenger was a 13-year-old boy who is not being identified at this time. Both were killed in the crash.

The occupants of the van outside of James who were killed were as follows:

  • Mauricio Sanchez, 19, of Mexico
  • Travis Garcia, 19, of Pleasanton, Texas
  • Jackson Zinn, 22, Westminster, Colorado
  • Karisa Raines, 21, of Fort Stockton, Texas
  • Laci Stone, 18, of Nocona Texas
  • Tiago Sousa, 18, of Portugal

Two more students who were in the van were transported by helicopter to Lubbock. Dayton Price was taken to UMC and Hayden Underhill was taken to Covenant, according to both hospitals. They have most recently been reported as being in critical condition.

The National Transportation Safety Board says they're sending a 12-member team to investigate the crash. 

The van was heading back from a golf tournament in Midland where both the women's and men's golf team members were competing.

The team was playing in a tournament in Midland on March 15, and were scheduled to tee off on Wednesday against Midland College.

The Midland College Golf Tournament has been canceled due to the recent tragic events.

"All of the players and their coaches from the participating schools met together early this morning,” said Midland College Athletic Director Forrest Allen. “We were all shocked to learn of this tragedy, and our thoughts and prayers are with USW as they grieve this terrible loss. I have talked with USW’s Athletic Director Steve Appel to let him know that all Midland College athletic team players and coaches are ready to help in any way during this time.”

Both parents, Randy and June James have served as coaches and teachers with the district.

The Tyler Lee James Memorial Golf Scholarship has been established with the Killeen ISD Education Foundation in his honor. 

Tyler was a golfer in KISD who followed his dream of coaching at the collegiate level. He was the head men’s and women’s golf coach at the University of the Southwest in Hobbs, NM.

How to Donate

Donations can be made at www://KilleenEducationFoundation.com or checks to KISD Education Foundation, 200 North WS Young Dr, Killeen, TX. 76543

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