Nursing student, children killed in traffic accident

Email this article 07/06/2011

Sara Hurley-Morales, a 28-year-old nursing student at SWTJC, along with her four children, ages 10, 6, 4 and 1, died in a horrible traffic accident Friday afternoon, July 1, just east of La Pryor.


According to Dr. Geraldine Goosen, director of the Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) Program at SWTJC, Hurley-Morales left Eagle Pass immediately following the end of classes Friday en route to San Antonio for the July 4th weekend.

"Sara was a good student. She was a graduate of SWTJC’s Vocational Nursing Program and was just finishing her first semester in our ADN program ," Dr. Goosen said. "She had wanted to be a registered nurse for many years and to see that dream cut short, well, it is just sad beyond words."

Goosen said classes were dismissed on Wednesday, July 6, to give students and staff the opportunity "to say goodbye to Sara and pay their respects to her family."

Funeral services were held Thursday, July 7 at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Eagle Pass with interment in the Catholic Cemetery.

According to Jose Balderas of the Texas Department of Public Safety, Hurley-Morales was driving eastbound on U.S. Highway 57, through moderate to heavy rainfall, when her 2007 Mercury Milan hydroplaned, causing the vehicle to spin directly into the path of a 1988 Peterbilt hauling a trailer.

"The trunk of her vehicle, the rear of her vehicle, struck the front of the 18-wheeler," Balderas said. The collision occurred at approximately 5:15 p.m. three miles east of La Pryor.

Balderas said the driver of the 18-wheeler was not injured but Hurley-Morales and her children were likely killed on impact.

According to Balderas, the highway was shut down for approximately four hours in order to clear the scene, which he described as horrific and said tops the worst accidents he has ever had to respond to.

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