The family was on their way back from the oldest daughter’s choir concert around 8:15 Tuesday night, headed to get something to eat before returning home.
The two girls — ages 10 and 13 — sat in the back of their car as it advanced south along the two-lane Blue Mound Road in Fort Worth, approaching the intersection with East Bonds Ranch Road. Their mother was up front driving. Their father was next to her.
Unbeknownst to them, a man heading in the opposite direction on the narrow road was about to try to pass the vehicle in front of him. He crossed into the oncoming lane of traffic at the intersection, where he crashed head-on into the family of four from Justin.
The girls were injured, one critically and one seriously, in the backseat of the car, according to Fort Worth police.
They didn’t know their parents had died, family members said. They couldn’t have known, due to the extent of their injuries.
Days later, as they recover in Cook Children’s Hospital in Fort Worth, they haven’t yet been told.
“The girls have been informed that they were in a crash, however do not currently know the extent of the situation,” three of their aunts told the Star-Telegram in a statement Thursday. “Their lives are forever changed due to this event and they will be surrounded with lots of friends and family to help them cope during this traumatic time.”
The girls’ parents, Crystal Lynn Haskins, 34, of Justin, and Moreio Deshawn Skinner, 38, of North Las Vegas, Nevada, were pronounced dead at the scene, according to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office. So was the other driver, Todd Lamar Thomas, 29, of Fort Worth.
Officer Ivan Gomez, a Fort Worth police spokesman, said on Thursday the driver’s attempted pass wasn’t technically illegal on that part of Blue Mound Road, also known as Farm to Market Road 156. But, unfortunately, it wasn’t safe to try, he said.
As the girls were recovering from serious injuries in the hospital on Thursday afternoon, Haskins’ three sisters — who requested to not be identified in this story — were wondering how they might tell them about their parents, and then where they’ll go from there.
They planned to tell them within the coming days, most likely telling one girl Thursday night and the other in a few more days, they said. One of the aunts will take in the girls and raise them alongside her two sons.
There is a “tremendous amount” of rehab and physical therapy ahead of the girls before they can go home, the aunts said. It’s unclear when the students in the Northwest Independent School District will be able to be discharged from the hospital and return to life.
But, while the girls are healing in the hospital, people have been contributing to a GoFundMe their cousin, Tanaya Currier Hestrin, started to support their recovery.
More than $6,000 of a $10,000 goal had been raised as of Friday morning.
“I set up the GoFundMe because the girls and their parents didn’t have any insurance or means to care for the girls and the level of care that their future holds,” Hestrin said.
The aunt who will raise them is a single mother who will need all the help she can get, she said. She hopes the money can do that for her.
In the late afternoon Thursday, she posted an update to the GoFundMe page saying both girls were progressing, with one moving from critical to serious condition and the other moving from serious to stable condition. The daughter in serious condition had a chest tube removed on Thursday, she wrote. The daughter in stable condition got to take off her neck brace.
They both have suffered numerous broken bones, she wrote in the message, but they are recovering.
Soon they would find out about their parents. And the family knows they have to endure that, too.
“Please continue to pray for the girls and their loved ones and friends as they all learn to cope with the new realities of life,” Hestrin wrote on the GoFundMe.