A mother of three made a terrible mistake when she drove into a freight train as it was crossing the tracks — her minivan was struck and two of her kids were killed.
Tara Lewman, 25 and her son, Jordan survived the terrible accident, but they were taken by helicopter to Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City. Tara’s daughters, Erika, 4 and Kallie, 5, however, were thrown from the 2004 Dodge minivan and died.
State Patrol Explains Why The Mother Didn’t Brake
Iowa State Patrol Sgt. Scott Bright explained that Tara saw a stopped train on the tracks in front of her, so instead of obeying the warning cross arms, she drove past the first train and into a different, oncoming freight train.
“She could not see because the train was blocking the view,” said Bright.
Railroad Crew Worked Hard To Revive The Girls
Batavia Fire Chief, Dave Wells, talked about the railroad crew’s efforts to help the children.
“When our guys got there, the railroad people were already doing CPR on one of the kids,” said Dave. “It’s a very sad thing. Crashes with small children are never easy to deal with.”
Family Member & School Speak Out About Terrible Accident
Bert Lewman, Tara’s uncle talked about her alleged unwise decision to cross the train tracks.
“She knew better,” said Bert. “‘She shouldn’t have ridden with the arm down, but it’s just one of those things.”
Cardinal Community School District in Eldon was the school that Tara’s daughters attended. The school district posted a Facebook message referring to the tragedy.
“‘We are working with staff and students to process this loss.”
Our thoughts are with Tara’s family at this sad time.
— Nicole Weaver