A Paulding County third grader has been identified as the 8-year-old boy killed Monday in a head-on collision in southern Alabama that also killed his mother and a teenage driver.
Larenz Graham was traveling with his family in Covington County, Ala., when their Nissan Pathfinder was hit by a wrong-way driver. He was a student at W.C. Abney Elementary in Dallas, according to principal Scott Brock. Neighbors said the family was traveling to the beach.
“It is with great sadness that I must inform you of the loss of one of our students, Larenz Graham,” Brock said Wednesday in a letter to parents. “Larenz was a third grader at our school who, along with his mother, passed away in a terrible automobile accident on Monday afternoon while the family was traveling in Alabama. Larenz’s father and two brothers remain hospitalized.”
According to the Alabama Highway Patrol, the family’s Nissan was hit in the southbound lanes on Ala. 55 when a northbound Chevrolet Camaro crossed a paved median into oncoming traffic.
The highway leads into the Florida Panhandle and is heavily traveled by tourists going to the beach, Alabama trooper Sgt. Drew Brooks told AJC.com.
The crash remains under investigation, but Brooks said speed was likely the primary factor.
The driver of the Chevy, 18-year-old Joseph Cameron Worley, was killed. Larenz Graham also died at the scene, Brooks said.
His mother, 35-year-old Landie Romulus, was flown to a Pensacola hospital, where she later died. His father, 44-year-old Edwin Cornell Graham, and his 3-year-old and 11-year-old brothers were stable as of Tuesday morning, Brooks said. They are still being treated at the hospital in Florida.
Romulus was a physician’s assistant at Lifetime Family Medicine in Dallas. After announcing her death on its Facebook page, the practice was flooded with condolences from patients who said Romulus was a talented and caring medical provider.
Her coworkers have set up a GoFundMe page to help the family with funeral and medical expenses. The campaign had raised more than half of its $10,000 goal as of Thursday.
While school is out for the summer, Brock said counselors will be available at Abney Elementary in the fall to talk with students who need support. They are also encouraging students to use a national crisis text line to speak to a trained crisis counselor by texting HELLO to 741741. Parents and students can find more information at crisistextline.org.
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