Holbrook, AZ - Summer Vacation Turns Deadly For Two Borough Park Girls (photo of accident)
Last updated on: August 11, 2015 06:22 PM
Holbrook , AZ - Arizona police have confirmed the deaths of two young women from Brooklyn last night in a horrific collision at the intersection of State Routes 77 and 377.
Lieutenant Jack Arend of the Holbrook Police Department said 26 year old Hindy Spira and 24 year old Raizel Morgenstern were both pronounced dead at the scene after their rental car was hit by a tractor trailer.
Two other girls, identified as Suri Mayerowitz and Miriam Meyer, were injured in the crash. Meyer, daughter of Misaskim’s Yanky Meyer, was flown to Flagstaff Medical Center while Mayerowitz was originally transported to the Little Colorado Medical Center in Winslow and then taken to Flagstaff Medical Center for non-medical reasons. Both are expected to survive.
The accident took place yesterday at 4:46 PM in Holbrook. Morgenstern, who was driving a rented blue Jeep Cherokee was heading east on State Route 377, came to a stop at the intersection of State Route 77 and then proceeded into the intersection directly into the path of an oncoming tractor trailer.
“She didn’t see the truck coming,” Arend told VIN News. “She pulled out to make a left turn and he wasn’t able to stop in time.”
The truck, a Kenwirth tractor trailer typically used to haul dirt, was empty at the time but Arend estimated the weight of the vehicle at approximately 32,000 pounds.
“It hit almost dead center of the driver’s door, but it crumpled it dead center,” said Arend. “That vehicle didn’t look like a Jeep Cherokee when we got there.”
Both Spira and Morgenstern were seated in the front seat of the car at the time of the crash.
The girls had spent Shabbos in Los Angeles with Rochie Engel, a friend who relocated from Brooklyn to California. Mrs. Engel said that she had helped the girls plan their trip.
“I could not have asked for better friends,” said Mrs. Engel. “So smart, great personality. Funny. They would help in any way so gracefully and graciously. They had the kindest, purest hearts and souls.”
According to Mrs. Engel, Spira and Mayerowitz were both graduates of Tomer Dvorah in Borough Park. Morgenstern was a graduate of Bais Bracha while Meyer graduated from Bais Yaakov of Borough Park.
Arend said that the group had rented the vehicle in Los Angeles on August 5th and were due to return it this past Sunday. The girls kept the car longer and were coming to Holbrook to visit the Petrified Forest National Park located east of Holbrook when the crash took place.
Sun glare does not appear to have played any role in the fatal collision, according to Arend who said that a heavy rain had just passed through the area and that weather was overcast with some sprinkles when the accident occurred.
Volunteers from Misaskim Los Angeles drove through the night, making the eight hour trip to Holbrook. One member is staying with Meyer and Mayerowitz in Flagstaff, while the other two continued on to Holbrook, spending over three hours cleaning the accident scene.
Sruly Garfinkel, president of Misaskim Los Angeles, said that based on volunteers’ reports, Meyer and Mayerowitz are fortunate to have escaped with their lives.
“They told me that if you looked at the car you would have expected the situation to be much worse,” said Garfinkel.
Two Misaskim members are currently at the morgue and will remain there until family members arrive to escort Spira and Morgenstern home for burial.
“I understand that Spira has two brothers that are on the way and that a private plane will be taking them back to New York,” said Garfinkel.
The levaya of Hinda Spira bas R’ Yitzchok will be held tonight at Shomeri Hadas at 10 PM. The aron will go thereafter to the New Square bais hachaim.
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