Remembrance ceremony planned for 2 children killed when train slammed into SUV in Henryville
A candlelight vigil is planned Friday for two young children who were killed when the SUV their mother was driving was hit by a train Wednesday afternoon in Henryville.
HENRYVILLE, Ind. (WDRB) -- A candlelight vigil is planned Friday for two young children who were killed when the SUV their mother was driving was hit by a train Wednesday afternoon in Henryville.
Police say it happened about 1:30 p.m. on June 28 near State Road 160 and Pennsylvania Street in Henryville. Investigators said a CSX train hit the white SUV, but it's not clear why the SUV was stopped on the tracks.
Witnesses who ran to the scene said the Adalynn Fouch, 5, and Wyatt Fouch, 4, were in the backseat. Both were pronounced dead at the scene, and the mother, 29-year-old Ericka Fouch, was taken to University Hospital and underwent surgery. Right now, she is in serious but stable condition.
Henryville Community Church Pastor Denny Dillman has been in contact with the family of the victims. He said the community will gather Friday at the Henryville Tornado Memorial at 7 p.m. for a candlelight vigil. The memorial is next to New Washington Bank.
"I think this hits way harder than anything else that could happen," Dillman said. "The reality of these two little children [gone], just in an instant. I think we're going to see tomorrow night how that is affecting people and the things that we need to do."
Dillman has been talking to family members of the victims since the tragedy.
They're in shock and struggling with what has happened," he said. "We want to respond with grace and mercy and love and let this family know that we are grieving with you."
Meanwhile, there are no railroad crossing arms at the intersection where the train collided happened, but neighbors said the crossing needs more than just lights to warn drivers when a train is approaching.
"You’re more likely to hear the train than see it, even on a bright day like today," said Daniel Hunter, who lives near the tracks. "It’s kind of hard to see the red blinking lights."
Dillman also said trains recently began moving at higher rates of speed through the community, and he has warned church members to be more cautious.
"In the last month-and-a-half or however long it's been, the trains are faster," Dillman said. "They've changed the speed of how fast they come through here."
On Thursday, CSX crews were out replacing a damaged communication box and railroad bungalow at the site of the crash, and the Indiana Department of Transportation is taking a closer look at the crossing.
"It's the crashes themselves that they're going to be looking at to see how they can rectify the situation here," said Harry Maginity with the Indiana Department of Transportation.
Maginity said as a result of the crash, more safety measures could be coming.
"Yes, the next step ... would be crossing arms," he said.
Maginity also said the tragic loss of life is not the only reason INDOT is looking at the railroad crossing.
"Whenever there has been more than two crashes, two crashes or more in a five-year period, it hits a trigger," he said.
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