Sonny Cleere leafed through a program from Thursday's canceled Hunt for Heroes appreciation banquet. He had just learned the name of one of the four veterans killed in Midland when a train crashed into a parade featuring 24 servicemen.
SAN ANGELO, Texas — Midland police have confirmed the identity of the four men killed when a train crashed into a Hunt for Heroes parade float Thursday afternoon in Midland.
U.S. Marine Corps Chief Warrant Officer 3 Gary Stouffer , 37, and Army Sgt. Maj. Lawrence Boivin , 47, were pronounced dead at the scene. Army Sgt. Joshua Michael , 34, and Army Sgt. Maj. William L. Lubbers , 43, were transported to and later pronounced dead at Midland Memorial Hospital.
At 9 a.m. today, Midland Mayor Wes Perry, along with pastors Patrick Payton and Roy Smith, invited the public to a communitywide prayer vigil at the Midland Centennial Plaza to help show support for the victims and their families that have been affected by this event.
Perry asked that citizens show support by lowering their flags to half-staff until 8 a.m. Monday.
In addition to the fatalities, 16 people were transported to Midland Memorial Hospital on Thursday after the train collided with a parade float carrying wounded veterans near downtown Midland.
Marcy Madrid at Midland Memorial Hospital told the Midland Reporter-Telegram late Thursday that of the 16 injured admitted to Midland Memorial, 10 people were treated and released, four were in stable condition, one was in critical condition and one was transported to Lubbock.
As of 7 a.m. today, five of the injured remain at the hospital, four in stable condition and one in critical condition, according to a Midland city news release. One person is currently in critical condition at University Medical Center in Lubbock.
City officials said the National Transportation Safety Board had arrived at the scene of the incident this morning and are working in coordination with other agencies on the investigation.
Sudip Bose, a veteran from Iraq who lives in Midland and had been volunteering as a physician for the parade, said he was 15 minutes away when he saw a scene "at times chaotic ... at times gruesome."
He had been headed to the end of the parade where a banquet awaited the veterans when he got the call to go to the crash.
When he arrived, veterans themselves were already tending to the wounded, tying tourniquets and applying pressure to wounds.
"Their instincts kicked in," he said, saying that the situation reminded him in some ways of combat situations where medical help had to be prioritized.
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