2 San Antonio teens who were visiting beach among 6 killed in ‘horrific’ head-on crash on I-37 in South Texas

Four men from Alice, including 3 teenagers, died at the scene, DPS officials said

Two teens from San Antonio were killed following a crash on Interstate 37 near Mathis on Saturday, Jan. 25, 2021. (San Patricio County Sheriff's Office)

SAN ANTONIO – Two teens from San Antonio who were visiting the coast were killed following a “horrific” crash that left six people dead in South Texas on Saturday.

The Dodge Grand Caravan the teenagers were traveling in was struck head-on by a Toyota Camry traveling southbound on the northbound lanes of Interstate 37 near Mathis around 3:30 a.m. Saturday, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

A passenger in the minivan, identified as Trent Ryan Edge from San Antonio, was pronounced dead at the scene. He was 19 years old, DPS officials said.

Four men in the Toyota Camry, identified as 19-year-old Noam Caleb Ortiz, 24-year-old Ruben Gonzalez Jr., 18-year-old Julian Reyna, and 18-year-old Kanyon Alegra, died at the scene. The four men were from Alice, a nearby city.

Four other people in the minivan were transported by ambulance to Christus Spohn Hospital Shoreline in Corpus Christi.

Helena Paige-Marie Dumas of San Antonio was pronounced dead on Saturday night after her family took her off life support, Sgt. Nathan Brandley told KSAT.

A female passenger in the minivan remains in stable condition, and the male driver and a male passenger remain in serious condition.

Brandley said he spoke with Dumas’ mother, who said the group of friends had visited the beach.

The cause of the crash remains under investigation, but Brandley said DPS is looking into if thick fog was a factor.

He said the fog resulted in about 20 feet of visibility, and it is possible the driver of the Camry, Ortiz, entered the highway on an exit ramp.

A call for a wrong-way driver came in minutes before the crash, and the Camry was possibly driving the wrong way for a few miles, he said.

“We still don’t have a solid reason,” he said, adding that they are awaiting toxicology reports after autopsies are performed.

San Patricio County Sheriff Oscar Rivera called the crash “horrific,” saying the scene will “forever be engraved” in the minds of first responders.

Read also:

About the Author:

Rebecca Salinas has worked as a digital journalist in San Antonio for six years. Her skills include content management, engagement and reporting.