MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) — A mother and two daughters who died on an icy highway in central Minnesota had gone out in a winter storm to pick up a prescription for one of the girls, a family member said Tuesday.

Melissa Lorenz, 31, and her two daughters, 10-year-old Angela and 7-year-old Desiree, from Flensburg, Minn., died Monday night on Highway 27 just west of Little Falls.

Lorenz’s sport utility vehicle was heading west on the two-lane highway when it crossed into oncoming traffic just before 7 p.m., striking an eastbound pickup truck head-on, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.

Another pickup truck then hit both vehicles. The drivers of the other two vehicles had non-life threatening injuries. The State Patrol said it still was investigating Tuesday and didn’t know why Lorenz’s vehicle crossed lanes, but officials believe the crash was weather-related.

Melissa Lorenz was a stay-at-home mom. Desiree attended Lindbergh Elementary School in Little Falls. Angela attended the Minnesota State Academy for the Deaf in Fairbault.

“(Angela) was very good at sign language, very good at putting puzzles together and stuff,” said the father of the two girls, Scott Lorenz. “And just a joy, a blast to have around. Always on the run, always doing stuff. Desiree, she was my little cuddle bug. She was always right there to give you a hug and hold her hand.”

Highways throughout Minnesota were icy and covered with light snow Monday night. The Minnesota Department of Transportation advised drivers to use caution. Both girls were buckled in the back of the vehicle. Melissa was not wearing a seatbelt.

“We come over here to my parent’s house every weekend and visit my mom and dad,” said Scott Lorenz. “And the girls, they loved going to grandpa and grandmas for the day, for lunch, for play with the horses, cats and dogs … just not fair.”

Robert Lorenz, Scott’s father, said the family was close. Scott Lorenz had been married to Melissa for about 11 years, although they had been separated for about a year.

“To lose three people in the family is a major shock,” said Robert Lorenz.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (57)
  1. Judy says:

    The are no words that can express the deep sorrow I feel for this womans family for the loss of your loved ones. My deepest sympathy. May God give you the strength to make it through this horrendous ordeal.

  2. tom says:

    When ICY in minnesota SLOW DOWN. Where you need to be is not going anywhere. May the Lord give strength and comfort in this families ordeal.

  3. Kerry says:

    This is truly tragic. My heart goes out to the family of that woman and her two young girls. Drive mindfully, Minnesota!!

  4. Sondra says:

    I hope the fact that they were together and are still together will console the family in some sort of way. Prayers go out to the family…

  5. David Wells says:

    This is a really sad time I hope the family will keep there heads up and believe that god is on there side

  6. Momma of 2 says:

    How tragic! This story breaks my heart. I hope the family and friends of these three beautifui women find some peace with the memories they had.

    God bless.

  7. lisa says:

    Please respect the family enough to not put snide remarks in.The only people that know what went on are now deceased, please respect the family enough to keep your rude comments to yourself.MAy God be with the Family in this terrible loss.

    1. Beej West says:

      I agree, Lisa.. did you report that guy? I did.

  8. Momma of 2 says:

    Don’t be so quick to judge. You have no idea what the curcumstance were that caused this accident.

    For all we know she could have been paying 100% attention, while white knuckled. It’s easy to say “what if” and “how come” after the fact. The reality is three young people lost their lives due to the tragic accident. Have a heart and some respect for the family and friends.

    Life is too short to be so judgemental and bitter.

    1. Robbin says:

      Amen, your statement Momma of 2 is so very very true.
      God bless and hold the families in his hands and help guide them through this tragedy.

  9. Momma of 2 says:

    I commented on Billy’s statement, but it seems it was removed. Thank you WCCO!

    We have no idea what went on in that vehicle. I’m sure the mother was paying 100% attention and was probably white knuckled white driving. What a shame to say such hurtful and foolish things. Life is too short to be so bitter and selfish! It’s easy to say “what if” or “how come” after the fact. Sadly the reality is that no matter what rude things people say it won’t bring back these three people.

    Have a heart and don’t be so rude! God bless the families and friends of these three. My heart goes out to you all.

  10. heather says:

    My thoughts and prayers go out to this family in their time of loss, may God comfort you and heal you.

  11. Richard in Minneapolis says:

    If this had been a roundabout instead of a ‘typical’ intersection all three of these people would be alive. We need to press our municipal and county officials to design safer intersections so that these types of accidents are prevented before they occur.

    1. Cathy says:

      I really can not believe that you actually posted that, sorry but three people lost there lives and you are worried about a roundabout intersection. The accident happened on a straight road they mention the intersection because that is where it happened on the straight road.

      1. Rlorenz says:

        im sorry but this didnt happen at an intersection. these girls were my cousins.. thanks for your ‘sympathy’.

    2. Concerned says:

      It happened about 1/4-1/2 of a mile away from and intersection. The road where it happened is really bad, it has a huge dip on both sides all the way across the road, that there are no warning signs of a dip. My heart and condolences go out to the family!

  12. JEANIE says:

    Tears, a heavy heart and lots of prayers is for the entire family. Could anything be any sadder? May God lift up the family and give the strenght.

  13. Kelly says:

    And no, there is still one living person who can recount what happened. Pray for him, as he was the person driving the pick up she slammed into.

  14. red says:

    Some people have no heart and are so tasteless God bless these peoplein this accident and their families

  15. CB says:

    So Sad – My Heart and Prayers are with all of the Family – I’m a father of 2 daughters, and Grandfather of 5 Grand Daughters and I can not even begin to imagine the sorrow and sadness that the family must be going through. Way to tragic, but I know and believe that they are all together in Heaven, and someday will meet all family members again. GOD BLESS THE FAMILY, AND SO SAD FOR YOUR LOSS.

  16. Robyn says:

    My thoughts and prayers go out to the ENTIRE families involved.. May god give them the strength and guidance to make it through this terrible time. Let them all know that they are thought of and prayed for! My self and my two young children were suppose to go to LF last night, and we decided to stay home, it could have been us…”each day is a gift, that is why its called present” live each day like its your last!! I will be praying for the families non-stop! …..

  17. Mike Lauthen says:

    May God bless the family

  18. Michael S. says:

    Keeping your family in our thoughts and prayers as well.

  19. Michael S. says:

    May God sustain you with His comfort and peace that surpasses all understanding. Your family is in our thoughts and prayers.

  20. Lea Ashley says:

    Wow! Ice, distraction, no seat belt worn by the mom, at least one driver alive with terrible injuries, etc. We like to talk and talk more about terrible things that happen and try to justify whys. The weather was awful Monday. I drove in it not because I had to because i chose to. I went no more than 40 and in 2nd gear much of the time for added stopping distance.I kept several cars behind the one in front of me. I crawled to where I was going and crawled back. I saw no cars in the ditch and all the cars around me were driving about the same. I was lucky. If we can post a comment here WE ARE LUCKY TO BE ALIVE after our storm on Monday. May that poor father find new love someday. In the meantime I will add him to my long prayer list. How very sad.

  21. AmandaT says:

    This is my oldest sister and my two beautiful nieces that were my entire world. My 5 year old daughter’s 2 best friends died that night, along with there amazing mother. I can speak for all of my family and friends when saying that we are not focusing on who did what. As far as the other driver’s and there families, be thankful you still have eachother, i would much rather be spending a week in the hospital visiting my recovering sister and nieces than spending the next week planning 3 funerals. For those of you out there with a heart, thank you. Thank you for caring for people you dont even know. And please continue to pray for my family, because this week is and will continue to be the hardest time of our lives. “Melissa, Angela and Desiree, i dont know how to live without you! Life will never be the same again, and i just wish you all could come back home! I love you all with my entire being and will miss you forever!”

    1. rosepickle says:

      Those girls are beautiful. I have nieces and nephews also and could not imagine going through what you are. God Bless you Amanda and your whole family. Just keep in mind, God only throws obsticles your way if he knows you can overcome them. The Lord WILL be with you and your family through this tough time. Remeber the Poem “Footsteps” this is the time when he’s carrying all of you on his back. God Bless!!!

    2. Kelly Jo says:

      Amanda, I am truly sorry for your loss. I do not know how I would react to losing any of my siblings…or nieces/nephews. You have said some very kind wonderful words. I will pray for you and your family.

  22. rosepickle says:

    Ready this story sent shivers up and down my body. Such a tragic story. My Prayers go out to the family of the woman and her two daughters. I also believe they are now in a better place and all their sickness healed. GOD BLESS THE MOM AND DAUGHTERS AND GOD BLESS THE FAMILY INVOLVED!!!!! MY HEART GOES OUT TO YOU!!

  23. Chrystina Lorenz says:

    The girls were my nieces & Melissa was married to my brother-in-law. This is so sad & so hard to believe that it’s real. Remember to say, “I love you every chance you can” You never know if it will be the last. And, be kind no matter what.

  24. Sheila says:

    Hopefully you know that God is holding you right know during this terrible time. Prayers and memories with you always.

  25. donjuan says:

    Our Father which art in heaven Hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom com thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our sins as we forgive them that sin against us. lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil for thine is the kingdom the power and the glory for ever and ever amen

  26. JackieM says:

    My thoughts go out to everyone involved. No sane person goes out there to take a life, let alone three… it was an accident. Unfortunately three lovely people got killed. May everyone involved find peace.

  27. Princess says:

    I work with kids and mothers everyday…this really is tragic…I am very sorry for your lost and hope that something good will come out of such a sad lost. May we all keep this family in prayer. May the mother and children be together forever. May the hearts of their love ones be comforted. May their love live forever with you!!!!! God has called his princesses home!!!

  28. Todd says:

    As a father who has lost a child through a sudden, unexpected incident the pain of grief is all too real. I would encourage you to get into counseling to sort through the trauma associated with these multiple losses.I did so and it made all the difference in the world in helping me to work through the shock and trauma of the loss.Give yourself time to grieve these losses by working through the emotions of these losses. Also, find yourself some good friends who are willing listeners who would have no problem listening to you tell your story over and over. Avoid getting involved with addictions as a avoidance mechanism. Unless you are willing to work on your grief your grief will wait for you. In time you will begin to experience the joy of living. There is an old saying I heard years ago which is ” it is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all. Your wife and two daughters were very fortunate to have you as father such as you.

  29. DH says:

    I am so very sorry to the family on the loss of these three beautiful lives.
    My family and I are praying for you all.

  30. tiffany says:

    I can not even imagine the pain the lorenz family is going through!! My daughter was friends with desiree. Melissa was a great mother to two beautiful girls and noone should be making this about weather or not she was wearing her seatbelt or any negative comments you may have. You should probably keep them to yourself! Have some respect. I am truly sorry to everyone close to melissa and the girls! May god wrap his arms around you and hold you tight during this difficult time! You all will remain in my prayers! And dont let the stupid people upset you with their rude comments!

  31. Ron says:

    What a horrible tragedy. They were adorable.

  32. Gootz says:

    Every child is a gift from God; all 3 are children of God. Pray that we all appreciate our own children as well as others and speak kindly. Never leave on an angry tone. Hearts can’t be healed when something like this happens.

  33. Tammy says:

    to the whole family They were wonderful people and great children. My daughter loved them since they were class mates. I know that this is a very hard time and I know that if you turn to god that you will be able to make it. We are all thinking and praying for you and them. May god lift some of the sorrow that you are going threw as their memories live on threw everyone. God bless you and be strong you are a very strong man.

  34. Kelli says:

    Please let this serve as a reminder why distracted driving is a REAL issue we all face today. It is sad that these 2 beautiful girls had to pay the ultimate price, but God has their hands now.

    1. Robbin says:

      RE: Kelli’s comment…..REALLY???? What gives you the right to say that??? Were you in that vehicle to know what happened??? Shame on you for that comment!! Put yourself in this families shoes for 2 minutes!! And Im so extremely sorry that 3 THREE people are in gods hands right now, 3 THREE beautiful girls!!

      1. Kelli says:

        My relative was in the vehicle that was struck. ICY roads and snow are a distraction for crying out loud. Driving in this state is no easy feat for even the most seasoned drivers…then add in whatever to casue the distractions…Changin the radio station, kids arguing, ability to not see the lines on the road when you are away from town..etc etc. We all need to remember the fact that our lives are just too important!

  35. robyn says:

    Does anyone know if there is a fund that has been set up for the family? I would like to help out any way that I can.

    1. Felicia Evans says:

      Yes there has been a memorial fund set up for the Lorenz family. Go to any US Bank in Minnesota. Its the Lorenz Memorial Account.

  36. Dustin says:

    Today I looked into the sky and it was beautiful. I then realized it’s because you are there. You fly with the angels now but part of you will always be with us.

  37. Lynnie B says:

    To the family may you find peace and comfort at this hard time, May God take your hands and walk with you. I am so sorry for your loss.

  38. Felicia Evans says:

    There is a memorial fund set up for the Lorenz Family. Go to any US Bank to make your donation. Its the Lorenz Memorial Account.

  39. Felicia Evans says:

    Please spread the word!

  40. Tommy says:

    angela goes to my school, MSAD, the whole school came to shock when we heard about what happened… tomorrow, we are all wearing pink in her memory! rip angela, we all love you!

  41. Clarissa says:

    agree with tommy i love angela she goes my school MSAD she awesome girl i never seen she soo sweet had alot memories with her. GOD BLESS ANGELA ,DESIREE,MELISSA LORENZ

  42. Susan says:

    Scott: My heart goes out to you. Kids are forever and always what life is all about. Your daughters love you and always will.
    They will be watching you and giving you loads of hugs through the clouds and sunshine of heaven.
    If you ever need to know that you are not alone, just know that you are not ! I never take my daughters for granted, they just have issues to learn that
    all parents are parents, no matter what the situation is. Whether it’s the present time or past times. We are parents and always try to be the best parents to make our children know the meanings of loving them always with boat loads of hugs and kisses. Love is unconditional always with the trusting support and securities that come with raising kids to become adults which in turn can become the love of children of the world that goes round and round.
    Handing down loads of love to your children is what you have done and you
    are a very loving parent. Just pray for your daughters and hopefully the tears will turn into joy, not sorrow. Don’t be afraid to cry in public as loving children
    should never be shameful no matter where we are or what we are doing.
    I hope that I have helped you in some shape or form.
    Life goes on, but it’s not the same and we hope that you know that we are there for you ! Take care always, God Bless You !

    Kids say the funniest things that makes you really wonder how they come up with the things that they do !
    The answers that kids give us are a part of us and they are just so very special to be their little and gradually big individual selves.
    Just wanted you to know that you have my prayers as I in a round a bout way have lost the connection with my two daughters.
    I have not physically seen my two daughters now for over the last few years and have tried, but with the way things went through my past divorce, I don’t stand a chance as the daughters are making their own decisions and really have
    made the wrong ones to delete their mother out of their lives
    I have daily prayers for all parents that can even relate to this.

    Sincerely, Sue

  43. Sue Anne Myers says:

    I’ve been good friends with Melissa and her daughters for almost 3 years now. They will be missed by a lot of people. I still can’t belleive this has happened. My heart goes out to the Tremblay family.. Melissa and the girls were so close to her mom and sisters. Such sadness to lose 3 members of a family all at once, All i have heard across the news and newspapers is about the Lorenz family, What about the family they really belonged too. Melissa and Scott haven’t been together for over 2 1/2 years now and didn’t see his girls very often. God Bless the Tremblay family may god give you all the strenth to overcome this tremendous tragedy

  44. Grecia Cordier says:

    Crimes committed within the family in a state of mental hallucination drug, alcohol, or money. In Sorbas, Andalusia, Marina Gijsels hacks killed his mother. In Amatlan, Mexico, Fernando Sandoval Losano like her mother killed, and Licata, Chile, Danilo Soto did the same with his mother. In Peru they are known murders of Eva Bracamonte Fefer, Elizabeth Espino Vásquez, Giuliana Llamoja Hilares and Maria Teresa Cruzado Vera. What happens in the world today never to have seen … These facts raise questions whether it is worth bearing children who will be our executioners.

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