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Funeral arrangements this weekend for Beavercreek kids killed in I-70 crash

Published: Friday, July 21, 2017 @ 9:48 AM
By: Will Garbe - Staff Writer

UPDATE @ 7:55 a.m. (July 26):

Finley and Brennen Bereda, the two children killed in a crash on I-70 last week, will be remembered Saturday at The Church of the Ascension in Kettering during a Mass of Christian Burial, according to an obituary.

The service will be held at the church, 2025 Woodman Drive, at 10:30 a.m.

MORE: Obituary for Finley and Brennen Bereda

The family also will receive friends at the Tobias Funeral Home in Beavercreek, 3970 Dayton-Xenia Road, from 4 to 8 p.m. on Friday.

“Brennen was such a character, full of joy and loved life. He was kind-hearted and a buddy to all of his friends and cousins,” the obituary read.  “He was just like his daddy and loved to dance and laugh. He was the best big brother, and will be forever looking after his sister in Heaven, as he did here on earth.”

MORE: Prosecutors reviewing Indiana crash that left 2 Beavercreek siblings dead

According to the obituary, “Finley with her bright blue eyes, was the perfect baby girl her mommy always prayed for. She loved to play with her big brothers, giggle, and snuggle. She brought joy to all that knew her.”

INITIAL REPORT:

Passing motorists attempted to save two Beavercreek children in the few minutes before Indiana State Troopers arrived at the Interstate 70 crash that killed them Tuesday, a trooper said.

The crash killed Finley and Brennen Bereda, ages 1 and 5, and sent their mother and driver Christina Bereda, 33, and sibling Jordan, 3, to hospitals in Indianapolis. Christina Bereda has been released.

Ascension Church in Kettering, where the Bereda family were parishioners before they moved to Missouri more than a year ago, will have a community prayer service for the family at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, church officials said. The church is located at 2025 Woodman Drive in Kettering.

A semi-truck hit the family’s van on Tuesday, said Sgt. Joe Watts of the Indiana State Police.

“When the semi-truck hit the van in the rear, it pierced through it and sheered off the right side,” Watts said. “That’s the side that Finley and Brennen were sitting on. When bystanders pulled over to help, they extricated the kids from the car.”

“We had two troopers on the scene within five minutes,” Watts said. He said the two children “appeared to be severely injured and they were unconscious” when troopers arrived.

“There was a physician on the scene and he was working on one of the children.”

MORE: I-70 fatal crash — What we know about the Beavercreek family

According to ISP, the semitrailer failed to stop or avoid traffic approaching a construction zone when it hit the Bereda’s van, about 60 miles southwest of Indianapolis. The semitrailer hit another semi after striking the Ohio family’s vehicle.

The driver of the semitrailer, 62-year-old Amritpal Singh, of Quebec, Canada, was taken to a hospital. The driver of the semi he hit, 57-year-old Russell Sims of Indianapolis, also was taken to a hospital.

According to ISP, prosecutors will review the incident for possible charges. Watts said authorities are running routine chemical and alcohol tests, but there is no indication Singh was intoxicated.

“Right now, we don’t know why he failed to stop,” Watts said.

Watts said the stretch of highway is “very busy” and has had its “share of crashes.”

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“There’s been construction in the Terre Haute area for about 5-6 years now,” he said.

But the volume of crashes did not make witnessing Tuesday’s scene any easier for troopers, Watts said.

“They were visibly shaken,” Watts said of his colleagues, who arrived on scene before him. “I’ve worked a lot of these things and they never get easier.”