Coroner identifies three men who died after ramming into security barrier at Robins Air Force Base
By WAYNE CRENSHAW | The Macon Telegraph | Published: October 7, 2019
MACON, Ga. — The names of the three men who were killed when their vehicle crashed into a security barrier at a Robins Air Force Base gate have been released.
Houston County Coroner Danny Galpin identified the deceased as Yaney Perez-Perez, 20, Adar Lopez-Morales and Evelio Perez.
Galpin did not have the ages of Morales or Perez and said he had no other information about them.
At about 9:30 p.m. Friday a vehicle approached the Russell Parkway gate at the base and the driver failed to comply with a sentry’s order to stop, according to a base release.
When the vehicle accelerated through the gate, a barrier was activated and the vehicle crashed into it.
Base spokesman Roland Leach said Sunday there was no further information to release. Galpin said on Saturday it was not known why the men tried to drive onto the base.
“That’s our problem ... Why were they trying to get on base — unless they didn’t know where they were,” Galpin said.“
Moises Velez, a community advocate and editor of Que Pasa, a Spanish language newspaper in Macon, said the men who died were all from Guatemala.
Alex Bersian Perez, who said Perez-Perez is his younger brother, spoke to The Macon Telegraph with Velez interpreting. He said his brother was a roofer who lived in Warner Robins who came to the U.S. three years ago on a work visa, but the work visa had expired.
“I don’t think they were trying to get into the base or anything like that,” he said. “I cannot tell you with certainty what moved them to do that.”
The driver and one passenger were pronounced dead on the scene, the release said. The other passenger was taken to Houston Medical Center, where he later died, according to the release.
“This is a tragedy which we all feel deeply at Robins Air Force Base,” Air Force Col. Katrina Stephens, 78th Air Base Wing vice commander, said in the release. “We will thoroughly investigate to determine the facts and circumstances and what can be learned from this tragedy.
“Our thoughts are with the families of those lost,” Stephens said.
Reporter Becky Purser contributed to this report