Local News

Family's cars collide near Seaboard, killing mother, son

Posted April 12, 2012

— Two cars carrying members from the same family crashed in Northampton County Wednesday afternoon, killing a mother and her 13-year-old son.

Troopers said Tami Mason, 37, was driving east on N.C. Highway 186, just outside Seaboard, with her 13-year-old son in the front seat and her 16-year-old son and 16-year-old nephew in the back. She was behind a car that was carrying her husband and 19-year-old nephew, Kenny Graham Jr., who was driving. 

Mason was in a passing zone and tried to drive by Graham, troopers said. Graham then started to turn left into a driveway, and the two cars crashed, sending Mason's car into a tree, killing her and her son Tavion Mason.

Two die when family's cars collide Two die when family's cars collide

Tami Mason's brother, Reggie Barber, said he saw the crash from a nearby home. He rushed over to see if he could help, he said, but it was too late.

"I ran down there and tried to pull the top off of them, but there wasn't anything I could do," he said. "I knew at that moment that my sister and nephew were gone."

Barber said his sister's car and the one carrying her nephew and husband were not headed to the same location, and he believes Graham did not know his aunt was behind him.

Tami Mason's husband wrote the names of his family on the tree.

"I can see that accident just happening again, and I wish there was something I could have done about it," Barber said. "I didn't have (any) sleep since that happened."

Troopers say alcohol and speed were not factors in the crash, though the investigation was continuing and charges were pending. The other four family members in the crash did not have life-threatening injuries.


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  • ladyblue Apr 13, 2012

    This is just so sad. that had to be horrible for the person who ran out to help and saw it happening also. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family and i see no need to pass judgment on the drivers..

  • southerntalent Apr 13, 2012

    passing on 2 lane country roads is very dangerous,why do people always feel the need to shave several minutes off their trip or even run a red light thru an intersection.People it isn't woth your life.

  • GravyPig Apr 13, 2012

    "As for the people speculating and making Harsh Remarks............ Heartless is putting it lightly!"

    "Amen "kyrain 1974""

    Tragic indeed. Unless they have been removed, I have read no "harsh remarks". People are going to second guess and make suppositions about a wreck like this. It is human nature to want an explanation or to try and rationalize a tragic event.

  • GravyPig Apr 13, 2012

    "why was there a passing zone where cars would turn into their driveways?" - paulmandl

    There are passing zones everywhere. Just because there is a driveway doesn't mean you can't pass. No passing zones are typically where there is poor visibilty or curves.

    You know, I can't beleive that I am actually having to explain passing zones to someone.

    Very sad for this family. Everyone should slow down and pay better attention. Wrecks like this are avoidable.

  • ObamaMustGo aka NCcarguy Apr 13, 2012

    HEY...piene2 and I had the same thought!

    I can't even imagine the pain those that survived are going through. I certainly pray that they somehow find a way to go on with thier lives.

  • GALNC Apr 13, 2012

    Prayers for all involved. Please do not back seat drive or critize, but send prayers to the family.

  • RDcallsit Apr 13, 2012

    why was there a passing zone where cars would turn into their driveways? this is terriblly tragic, and confusing.

  • iwasjustsaying Apr 13, 2012

    So sad...prayers for all.

  • awood2 Apr 13, 2012

    this is absolutely terrible. I am praying for all involved.

  • piene2 Apr 13, 2012

    "Easy explanation - like most drivers these days the car in front did NOT use his turn signal. The car in back sees a slowdown for no good reason and decides to go around. So sad to see such a tragic result when a tweak of your finger could have avoided it.

    Thank you for that fine forensic analyses. I am sure it will comfort the family in their time of need.