Josiah Dunnavant, 12, and his brother Nicholas of Theodore were killed Saturday in a multi-vehicle crash on Interstate 65 in Butler County. Ten people, including nine children, were killed.
The boys were active members of the Theodore Church of God. Below is a statement from their pastor.
“Our Church family has been tremendously affected by this terrible tragedy! Both Nicholas & Josiah were actively involved in our children’s & student ministries weekly. They were both kind, courteous & very respectful boys who were loved by everyone. This past Sunday, as I stood on stage, I could see tears flowing down the cheeks of everyone in the building! Our entire church family is mourning with the mother & the siblings as they suffer the pain of this horrific tragedy! Please help us pray for them, & if possible make donations to the go-fund-me account to help with funeral expenses! Thank you & may God bless you in Christ Jesus!”Pastor Joey McCollough, Theodore Church of God
The mother and siblings of Josiah and Nicholas also sent WKRG News 5 a statement thanking the community for its support – but also asking for privacy and understanding and they endure the “unimaginable.”
Butler County coroner Wayne Garlock said the fatalities included a 3-year-old, 8-year-old, 12-year-old, 14-year-old, 15-year-old, two 16-year-olds, and a 17-year-old. All were from Alabama and were pronounced deceased at the scene. The children were in a vehicle from the Tallapoosa County Girls Ranch in Camp Hill, Garlock said. ALEA says Cody Fox, 29, of New Hope, Tenn., and his 9-month-old daughter, were also killed.
The boys are family members of some of the others in the Tallapoosa County Girls Ranch vehicle.
Brittany Kruszewski, a friend of the boys’ mother, started the GoFundMe a day ago to help with funeral expenses with their mother’s permission. It has already surpassed the goal of $20,000. Kruszewski says she has known their mother, Brandy Lee, for a long time, and is shocked by the response to the GoFundMe.
All of the money raised will go directly to Lee and will be used for any expenses.