After a devastating car crash, a dad woke up in hospital paralysed – and learned that his three daughters were killed.
Somchai Lurak, 26, a restaurant manager from Idaho, in the US, has been left severely injured after a drink-driver hit his car at 80mph while the family were stopped at a red light.
The culprit has since admitted his guilt and is due to be sentenced for three counts of vehicular manslaughter.
His fiancée, and the girls’ step mum, Emma Weigand, 25, was in the passenger seat at the time of the crash – she suffered a broken arm and ribs.
However, as Somchai lay in his hospital bed, his brother had to break the news that his children – Aneena, six, Kya, five, and Drayka, three – were all killed in the fateful collision.
As reported by The Sun, Somchai’s brother, Anthony Smock, 34, said:
Just when I think I might be getting over the worst, tears just start pouring out of my eyes.
I start thinking about my nieces’ beautiful smiles and sweet little giggles, and how every time I would sweep them up into my arms and give them hugs and kisses.
I want them back and I want my brother to be able to have his babies.
Smock added that it’s a miracle Somchai is still alive. ‘Due to the accident, he is missing seven vertebrae in his neck and because of the place it is in his neck, doctors are amazed that he has any feeling in his legs whatsoever,’ he added.
Due to the nature of his injuries, Somchai’s recovery period will be long and expensive – as such, the family set up a GoFundMe page, which has already raised nearly $55,000.
My brother has said he’s doing the best he can but he’s devastated.
As of right now he’s classed as an incomplete quadriplegic – he’s got feeling but no movement. We don’t know whether he’ll ever walk again.
Smock broke the news, along with his sister Amanda, after Somchai awoke from sedation. ‘We had to wait till he was less sedated to tell him that his beautiful daughters were dead. They were the sweetest girls,’ Smock said.
The family are trying to share their story to raise awareness of the consequences of drink-driving.
Our family have three pieces of our hearts missing forever now. To everyone everywhere, I’m begging you.
Never ever drink and drive – it’s selfish and stupid and can destroy people’s lives and families forever.
To find out more information about donating, you can visit the GoFundMe page here.
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.
After graduating from Glasgow Caledonian University with an NCTJ and BCTJ-accredited Multimedia Journalism degree, Cameron ventured into the world of print journalism at The National, while also working as a freelance film journalist on the side, becoming an accredited Rotten Tomatoes critic in the process. He’s now left his Scottish homelands and took up residence at UNILAD as a journalist.