Hope Mills wreck shatters tight-knit family
Posted December 11, 2009 4:18 p.m. EST
Updated December 12, 2009 4:49 p.m. EST
Hope Mills, N.C. — A family that spent all of their time together was torn apart Thursday night when a head-on collision killed the father and young daughter and seriously injured the mother.
Hien Truong was delivering berets and uniforms to area soldiers when a Mustang slammed into his Ford Explorer in the 2800 block of Hope Mills Road.
Truong, 26, of Parkton, and his daughter, Hanna, who would have turned 1 next week, were killed in wreck. Truong's wife, Huyen, 26, was injured and remained critical but stable early Saturday in the intensive care unit at Cape Fear Valley Medical Center.
"They always (were) together, even when he goes (to) deliver berets. They never go anywhere without each other," said Hien Truong's mother, Rose Nguyen.
Nguyen brought her son to America from Vietnam when he was 13. He joined the Marines and inspired his little brother to do the same, and he then joined the family business, which gets berets and uniforms ready for soldiers to wear.
Police said Tristan Hanna was heading south on Hope Mills Road in his Mustang when the car crossed the center line and hit the Truong family's SUV.
Hanna, 26, of Webster, N.Y., also was killed in the wreck. A female passenger in his car, Brooke Paquin, 32, was in critical condition Friday at New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington.
Police said Hanna was driving an estimated 65 mph in a 45-mph zone. It doesn't appear that alcohol or drugs was a factor in the wreck, they said.
"The common theme seems to be that traffic was stopped here in the roadway, and he had to go around them," said Sgt. Dave Servie of the Hope Mills Police Department.
"That was my first grandbaby," a sobbing Nguyen said of Hanna Truong. "They fall in love and marry and ... start their family and just had a baby."