2010-07-02 / Front Page

Young Life Lost in Tragic Car Accident

Jennifer Escuadra, an 8-year-old girl from Austin, died in a tragic two-car accident last Saturday afternoon at about 5:00 p.m. The accident occurred at Highway 21 near FM 3403, east of Highway 77. There were a total of seven people in the vehicles involved in the accident, and only the driver of the 2009 GMC pickup was uninjured in the crash.

On the scene at the accident, working to rescue the passengers, were B & M Ambulance, Giddings Volunteer Fire Department, the Texas Department of Public Safety, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, Star Flight and Air Vac.

Vincent Joseph Slominski from Caldwell was driving the GMC pickup eastbound on Hwy. 21, with one passenger, Ivanka Slominski, also of Caldwell. A 2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser, driven by Eleonore Gebhard Atwood of Austin, was traveling westbound on Hwy. 21 with four passengers when she crossed into the oncoming lanes in order to avoid striking another unknown vehicle from the rear. That’s when the GMC pickup hit the PT Cruiser.

As of Saturday, those injured were Eleonore Gebhard Atwood, age 63, who was listed in stable condition with scratches and bruises at the University Medical Center, Brackenridge, in Austin; Tiana Wilkins, age five of Austin, listed in critical condition with severe leg injury and spine fracture at Dell Children’s Hopsital in Austin; Angel Saltillan, age 18 months of Austin, listed in critical condition with a skull fracture at Dell Children’s Hospital in Austin; Ivanka Slominski, 36 of Caldwell, listed in stable condition with cuts and abrasions at the University Medical Center, Brackenridge, in Austin; and Norma Angelica Prieto-Flores, age 24 of Austin, listed in stable condition with non-life threatening injuries at Brackenridge Hospital in Austin.

All passengers were wearing seatbelts except the deceased and the five-year-old girl.

Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper Ordie Manner investigated the accident and was assisted by the Lee County Sheriff ’s Department Chief Deputy Charles Kothmann and Deputy Durrenberger. The Giddings VFD used the Jaw of Life to help extract the injured from the vehicles.

Justice of the Peace Danita Smith made the declaration of death at the scene of the accident.

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