Family of crash victims comes together to mourn

By: Gene Petriello Email
By: Gene Petriello Email

News 12 First at Five, Dec. 12, 2007

BURKE CTY, Ga. -- A deadly wreck in Burke County leaves 4 people dead. 2 of those are from the same family. News 12 talked to the family about their loss.

A witness described a fatal wreck in Burke County as a chaotic scene. This all happening on Highway 25 north of Waynesboro and just past the Burke County line. One family talking about moving on.

This is the scene. Tuesday night just before 6 o'clock. 4 people dead -- two of them from the same family.

"I still can't believe this happened. Still can't believe he's gone," says Ella Thomas. She lost her son and grandson in the wreck.

"I'm in shock. I still don't believe it happened," says Mark Allen Thomas, the oldest brother to Julius Senior.

The victim: in one car, 46 year-old Julius Thomas Senior, his son 16 year-old Julius Thomas Junior.

"Oh, he was a good boy. He boxed, he was a boxer. He won the championship and he was a football player," says Ella.

Fred Petrea - who drove the other car - dead. Thomas's family just trying to get through.

"It's a shock the way it happened, but I accept it... that he won't be coming back home," says Mark.

"It's going to be a terrible loss because he was my handy guy. Anything he saw that needed to be done, he did it," says Ella.

"On my way to work this morning, a feeling hit me. Felt like I was just going to let go, but I held on," says Mark.

The crash -- also taking the life of Julius's girlfriend -- 41 year old Carrie Maw Habersham. The only survivor: 17 year old Clarissa Thomas. She's in fair condition at MCG. 2 weeks before Christmas, this family looking towards their faith.

"I won't be able to spend Christmas with him, but he's in here. Both of them, in here (her heart) and I loved both of them deeply," says Ella.

The Georgia State Patrol says tomorrow an officer will most likely be out recreating the scene. Speed is not considered a factor, but alcohol reports are pending. The Burke County Coroner says Fred Petrea is from Waynesboro and he worked with the Georgia Forestry. And Carrie is from Hephzibah. This appears, right now, to be a head-on collision.


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  • by Clarissa Thomas Location: FT. LAUDERDALE on May 18, 2010 at 11:20 AM
    I AM THE YOUNG LADY THAT SERVIOR IN THE CAR WRECK. I AM HEART BROKEN AND I CRY EVERY NIGHT KNOWING THAT I CAN NOT SEE MY FAMILY WHEN I WAKE UP IN THE MORNING. WE WAS EVER CLOSET. MAMA(CARRIE) DADDY (jULIUS SR.) AND LITTLE BORTHER (LULIUS JR.)I JUST WANT YALL TO KNOW THAT YALL IS IN A BETTER PLACE. GOD HAS HIS REASON. AND I WANT YALL TO KNOW THAT I LOVE YALL. MAMA AND DADDY YALL RAISE A GOOD GOOD CHILD.
  • by SARAH Location: BURKE COUNTY on Dec 24, 2007 at 07:15 PM
    JULIUS IS OR WAS ONE OF MY BEST FRIENDS! I WILL NEVER EVER FORGET HIM! I FEEL SORRY FOR HIS FAMILY B/C THEY HAVE TO SPEND CHRISTMAS WITHOUT THEIR FAMILY! i love you Julius! R.I.P.
  • by a friend Location: augusta on Dec 21, 2007 at 08:43 PM
    i was his friend we didnt see each other every day but i knew we was friends he loved everyone and i know he is in heaven looking down and saying please have happy tears not sad.Cause he is in a better place and i will always love him! ill see you agin buddy.the family will be in my prayers and i know god will bless yall and get yall through it love you.
  • by tara Location: augusta on Dec 17, 2007 at 03:22 PM
    the woman who died in the wreck that killed the thomas family. was in fact julius thomas jr.'s mother and her name was ms. carrie m habersham .so you see that young woman clarissa thomas not only lost her brother, she lost her father and her mother also. so i give the only two serviors of that family my deepest sympathy and my prayers are with the both of you clarissa thomas and your big brother willie.
  • by Charlene Location: Philadelphia on Dec 17, 2007 at 10:05 AM
    I want to start by saying a family the prays together stays together. This news was a shock to me. I had just been with my family abnout three weeks ago at my auntie Will house and we had a good time laughing and joking. I want to say to Jay's mom that he was family (my cousin in law) his smile will be missed. Bo man and my daughter had build a relationship from the summer and the last word I heard him say was I be sixteen soon I not a little boy any more. Ella you were so crazy I don't know what to say about you. I know that you wasn't feeling well but you couldn't tell by the way you were joking and sniling becausae you never complained. YOU GUYS ARE IN A BETTER PLACE KNOW. IT's hard for us to accept and handle but God makes no mistakes. Clarrisa I love you, YOUR SMILE, YOUR COURAGE. Get well soon. Pody you have to be strong and believe in your family. Love your cousin Pooh
  • by courtney Location: burke county on Dec 15, 2007 at 04:07 PM
    i was 1 of juliuses best friends and now too see him gon it makes me feel really bad b/c for him too be gon i am lonley and he always brightned up my day and made it a lot better wen i was down im just gonna miss yooh julius forever and ever!!!!!!!
  • by KARI Location: FT.LAUDERDALE, FL on Dec 14, 2007 at 07:49 PM
    THERE'S NO OTHER AUNT THAT COULD REPLACE YOU! YOU KEPT ALL OF US SMILEING WHEN YOU CAME TO FLORIDA (POMPANO BEACH)WE ALL WOULD BE SO EXCITE JUST TO SEE YOU & YOUR FAMILY, WE WOULD NEVER FOR GET THAT. TO MY OTHER AUNTS & UNCLE: DOT(LOUISE), FRANCIE(AUNT MONKEY), WILLIE-MAE (BONANNIE), MOM (DIANE), AND BO-DILLIE (JIMMY) JUST WANTED YA'LL TO NO THAT AUNT ELLA & BOGGIE IS IN A BETTER PLACE RESTING AND THAT THIERS NO GREATER LOVE THEN THE LOVE FROM YOUR FAMILY. I LOVE ALL YA'LL. TO UNCLE JAY: YOU WILL BE DEEPLY MISSED BY ME!! PODY-HOPE YOU COME TO YOUR SENCES ABOUT THING. MOSSIE- BABY GIRL HOPE YOU RECOVER QUICKLY. IT'S SO HARD TO SAY GOOD BY TO MY AUNT CARRIE. LOVE YOUR NICE KARI(KASSIE).
  • by Chumana Location: Pomp,Bch,Fla on Dec 14, 2007 at 07:15 AM
    Auntie Ella i will miss you Boggie,Jay very much.Mossie hope you get better very soon.Pody i love u stay strong.
  • by Francie Location: Pomp.Bch,Fla on Dec 14, 2007 at 06:54 AM
    Ella you were my sister and my best friend.We talked two or three times a week I,m going to miss those conversations very much. Boggie i am going to miss you very much and Aj and your aunts, uncle,cousins.We all love you your mom and Jay.Mossie we love you and hope you have a speedy recovery.Pody we all love you and we are here for you and Mossie.
  • by Carl Location: Waynesboro on Dec 13, 2007 at 04:45 PM
    I know how you fell about your lost of a love one you did have a chanch to know them both Because I lost my mother&Brother in a car wreck 40 years ago I was only 8 months old and never had chance to see or know them so may god bless you and just trust in him and everything will be ok
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