The multicar pileup took hours to clear after the tragedy on Interstate 75 last week left two people dead, but the pain has yet to subside for the families.
One of the victims was 2-month-old Asher Gaspard. His parents’ heartache is so palpable that it can’t be put into words.
“There’s a lot of hurt and lot of pain. Definitely just a sense of, just, I don’t know,” Reginald Gaspard, Asher’s father, said.
Now, after the Gaspard family’s life changed in the blink of an eye, they are struggling to find a new normal.
“I got the phone call from her that she was in an accident,” Reginald, referencing his wife, explained. “She was pretty shaken up, so it was hard to tell what the severity was.”
But the accident wasn’t just severe, it was devastating.
On Aug. 5, while traffic crept along I-75, a dump truck failed to slow down. The truck hit two vehicles, crushed a third, and crashed into five more, FOX 13 reported.
Asher was in the car, along with two sisters and his mother. He died a day later at the hospital.
“It’s nothing that I think that any parent should have to go through,” Reginald said. “Never do you think it will happen to you.”
According to Florida Highway Patrol, charges against the 74-year-old driver of the dump truck are still pending. An investigation is also ongoing and could last for at least six months.
S&S Site Prep, the company that owns the dump truck responsible, had nothing to say. They would not reveal if he was still employed.
Despite their grief, they hold no resentment toward the driver, the Gaspard family said.
“I’m sure it’s a lot for him to have to deal with as well. I mean, I don’t wish any ill will toward him or anything like that,” Reginald said.
The family is now focusing on healing as they cherish Baby Asher’s memory.
“He was so loving, everything about him was amazing,” Fritzy Gaspard, Asher’s mother, said.
The sobering tragedy has left the Gaspards with a message to other parents as they hold their two daughters a little tighter.
“Cherish every moment, even the small thing,” Reginald added. “The smallest things to the biggest things, but definitely nothing should be looked at as tomorrow or next time, because it’s not promised.”