A man and his two children are dead after a two-car accident on Highway 309 north of Paris caught fire on Thursday (Aug. 22).
Family of 32-year-old James “Dusty” Lee said he and his two sons James Dawsen Lee, 8, and Caleb Campbell, 12, were killed in the head-on collision.
“The truck was traveling northbound, the car was traveling south bound. The truck was attempting to pass another vehicle,” said Derek Neitert with Arkansas State Police. “As it did, it had a head on collision.”
According to an accident report from Arkansas State Police, a vehicle driven by Eric Thompson, 42, of Paris, was northbound in the southbound lanes of Highway 309 as he attempted to pass another vehicle. The vehicle driven by Lee was southbound when the two collided, causing Lee’s vehicle to overturn and eject the passengers.
Logan County Chief Deputy David Spicer said his deputies and Arkansas State Police were dispatched to the accident around 4 p.m.
The vehicles caught fire during the accident, according to witnesses. Other drivers managed to pull the children away from the wreck.
“We started giving CPR to the kids until the paramedics got there,” said Stephen Gossow. “Unfortunately, it didn’t work out.”
Thompson was taken to UAMS in Little Rock where he underwent surgery and was listed in critical condition Friday (Aug. 23).
Family members of the Lee’s said they loved to ride horses and were very outgoing. The family said they will forever be missed.
An account has been set up at Simmons First National Bank to help with funeral expenses for the man and his sons. The account is in his wife’s name, Michelle Howard Lee.