ST. PAUL (WCCO) — The Minnesota State Patrol has released more information about the deadly crash on Interstate 94.
The three-vehicle crash in north Minneapolis killed a grandmother, a mother and a son traveling together Sunday.
They died after their minivan overturned near 49th Avenue North, just after 1 o’clock yesterday afternoon. Five other people in the minivan were hurt. Two other vehicles were also involved in the crash.
Authorities identified the deceased victims as 80-year-old Modupe Olibasi, 44-year-old Olawunmi Olabisi and 16-year-old Oluwaseun Barbington. They were killed instantly.
It’s a large family, with a grandma, mom and dad, four children and a relative visiting from Nigeria. They were heading from their church in south Minneapolis back to their home in Coon Rapids when they were hit on the highway.
According to the State Patrol, the series of events started around 1 p.m. Sunday when 38-year-old Ronie Oberuomo’s Honda Odyssey somehow made contact with 18-year-old Casie Pawlik’s Jeep Patriot. The Jeep went up onto the embankment, but the Honda swerved off the highway and then back on. It collided with the minivan, which rolled several times.
The minivan then struck the median and rolled multiple times, ejecting four of the occupants — killing three.
Pawlik and Oberuomo were not hurt.
“It’s too much, I can’t handle it. It’s too much,” said brother-in-law Ifonlaja Samson, “It’s devastating, it’s devastating.”
At a briefing in St. Paul, State Patrol Lt. Eric Roeske said the victims weren’t wearing seat belts, and if they had, it might have saved their lives.
“It always comes down to speed, seat belts, attention and impairment. We don’t have one of these crashes that goes by without one of these factors being involved,” said Roeske. “The factors are all in control of the occupants and drivers … I’m not trying to blame the victims involved, but it’s a fact that we can’t ignore.”
The State Patrol does not believe that alcohol was a factor in this and is still trying to determine what caused the first two vehicles to hit each other.
The driver and father of the four children in the minivan, 51-year-old Akinbowale Barbington, is in serious condition after a 5-hour surgery at Hennepin County Medical Center.
Sixty-one-year old Oluremi Ayodele Ogundare and 12-year-old Faith Barbington are in fair condition at North Memorial. Fifteen-year-old Fisayo Abigail Barbington and 5-year-old Tobi Barbington are in critical condition at North Memorial.
The family has set up a fund to help with burial expenses for their grandmother, mother and son. The Wells Fargo account can be found under the Olabisi Family Benefit Memorial, Account No. 813-643-5156.
They are all expected to be OK.
Thoughts, Prayers For Family Of Those Killed In Crash
Pastor Reg Hannah held an impromptu prayer service today at New Wine Church.
“We’ve had a lot of loss at the church. Several people have died for one reason or another,” said Hannah.
NewsRadio 830 WCCO’s Susie Jones Reports
Hannah said they have planned a prayer service for Wednesday evening for the family of those killed.