Below are the names of those who lost their lives in the recent New Braunfels First Baptist Church bus accident. Here we are building an online memorial, putting faces to the names of those mourned. We will continue to add information and photos as they become available. Please continue to pray for the families, friends, and the congregation of First Baptist.
Sue Wynn Tysdal, 76, Of New Braunfels
Sue’s granddaughters posted the following publicly on Facebook: “As many of you may have heard or seen, there was an awful wreck in San Antonio this afternoon and I’m sadden to say that my Gram was one of the 13 that did not make it back to the First Baptist Church. However, I can confidently say she made it into Heaven and left singing praises. This woman was so strong in her walk with Christ and I looked up to her in too many ways to count. Please keep our family in your prayers as well as the other families, particularly my dad, Dustyn. God has a plan and He makes all things work together for good. Gram, I guess Grandfather didn’t want to see the Majesty of the Kingdom with out the woman who pulled him back in and was there by his side in sickness and in health. I’m so sorry you had to go this tragically but I know you are in peace which gives me peace. I love you and Grandfather dearly and I’m thankful for the role you two played in my life.”
The Tysdal Family issued the statement: “It is with extremely heavy hearts that we acknowledge the unfortunate passing of one of the Matriarchs of the family. Sue Tysdal was welcomed into the arms of our Father yesterday afternoon after a tragic bus crash in her home state of Texas. She will be missed dearly, but we remain steadfast in our knowledge we will one day meet again. Mathew 25:21 – “His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!'” We’re positive the Lord has many things for Sue to accomplish now in a new home and body. God Bless.”
Murray William Barrett, 67, New Braunfels
Murray is survived by his wife, Dianne, and their four grown children. He was driving the church van back from a three-day retreat when the accident occurred. He was known at First Baptist Church New Braunfels as a gentle leader and a kind teacher who loved kids and lead AWANA. He was a semi-retired math teacher who also worked at Schlitterbaun. He studied Business Administration at Texas State University. His daughter, Jenn, posted a beautiful piece remembering her dad.
“My heart aches at the thought that he will never see me in a wedding dress or hold my firstborn. But I know with full confidence that my father ran his race and completed his mission. The ripple effect of his life will be felt for generations.” – Jenn Barrett
Mildred Goodlett Rosamond, 87, La Porte
Mildred worked as a front desk receptionist at Memorial Baptist Church, but she described herself as “Retired and loving it.” In the past she worked at Baytown Sun Newspaper. As a child, she attended Robert E Lee High School in Baytown, Texas.
“We are heartbroken to hear the sad news about Mildred Rosamond,” said Pastor Windell Gill of First Baptist Church in La Porte. “She was among those senior adults killed in the Bus crash near San Antonio. Mildred was an amazing woman of God who was always ready to encourage me and her whole church family. We will share more about the arrangements as we hear from the family. Please be in prayer for comfort, encouragement, and wisdom. I know Mildred would want us to Keep our eyes in Jesus.”
Another friend wrote, “So sad to hear that Mildred Rosamond died in the church bus accident near Garner State Park yesterday. She was such a kind, loving Christian woman and a very special friend. We worked together and she went to school with my parents. Heaven truly gained an Angel yesterday.”
Addie Maurine Schmeltekopf, 84, New Braunfels
Addie initially survived the crash, but passed away at University Hospital In San Antonio. Addie’s hometown is Hamilton, Texas, but she got her degree at Gulf Coast State College in Panama City, Florida.
On her Facebook page is a meme that reads,
“When you carry a Bible, the Devil gets a headache.
When you open it, he collapses.
When he sees you reading it, he faints.
When he sees you living it, he flees …
I just defeated him.”
And defeat him she did. A friend wrote of Addie, “Words cannot express how sad I am in the passing of Miss Addie who I dearly loved and cherished the friendship we had.”
Her daughter in law posted, “Asking that you lift my husbands family in prayer. His Mother, Addie Schmeltekopf was one of the victims of the New Braunfels church bus crash yesterday. So many lives lost so tragically. Life is precious. Prayers to you and yours.”
Another friend wrote, “Addie Schmeltekopf was a dear lady and precious friend. Besides singing in our church choir, she also volunteered each week to prepare band folders for Wednesday night rehearsals. She let us know this week that she would be participating in this retreat, would not be there yesterday afternoon, but would be there for choir rehearsal last night.”
Cristie Clare Moore, 68, Cibolo
Cristie was a very proud grandmother who also leaves behind her husband.
A friend of Cristie’s wrote, “RIP Cristie Moore and all victims. Cristie was a very nice lady I had the privilege of knowing while working at BAMC (Brooke Army Medical Center, Fort Sam Houston, TX). You’re in the arms of our Savior and home at last. My prayers and deepest condolences to the families of these angels who took flight.”
Rhonda Barlow Allen, 61, New Braunfels
Rhonda Barlow Allen was a mother of three and grandmother of five girls. She was a part time Hospice Nurse who posted on Facebook, “I love my life!” Rhonda worked at Gentiva, went to Sam Rayburn High School, and called Pasadena her hometown. A friend of Rhonda’s Posted, “Rhonda Allen, what a kind and loving soul?. I was very blessed to have known you??. May you Rest In Peace.”
Another friend wrote, “To have been able to have people cross my path and make it brighter in EVERY way. I want to share my LOVE with the New Braunfels families who lost their loved ones in the tragic bus accident. A special friend, Rhonda Allen was among the fatalities. Heaven definitely received an Angel back.”
Donna Elizabeth Hawkins, 69, Schertz
A friend said of Donna, “Yesterday we lost a very good friend and Square Dancer. Her name was Donna Hawkins. She lost her life in a horrific bus accident in Texas along with 12 others. She was returning from a religious retreat when their bus was hit head on. Donna was the consummate Square Dancer. She was always supporting the activity. She danced often, and was a club president, CA State council historian (always with a camera in her hand!) and so much more. When Donna was at a dance everyone knew it! If there is such a thing as the “Life of the Dance” Donna was it! Who could forget her ‘All girls Squares.’ Rest in Peace Donna I and so many others will miss you so much!”
Avis Scholl Banks, 83, Austin
“This is a tragedy for us left behind but there was a room in GOD’s house for them. Please don’t forget the prayer for that young man driving the truck and his family also. I wouldn’t want to carry that weight.”
– Mark Scholl, Avis Scholl Bank’s great nephew
Howard Bryan Allen, 81, New Braunfels
Howard lost his wife, Patricia, just last year. He now joins her and his son, Emmett Miles Allen, in Heaven.
Martha Holcomb Walker, 84, New Braunfels
A family member wrote, “Please be in prayer for the children of my mom’s youngest sister, Martha Walker, who was killed in the church bus crash outside of San Antonio yesterday, and the families of First Baptist Church of New Braunfels.”
Dorothy Fern Vulliet, 84, New Braunfels
The only public photo on Dorothy’s Facebook is of her nephew, Gary Vulliet’s, grave. She wrote, “I join you in paying tribute to all our veterans. It brought tears to my eyes to see Gary’s grave marker. Such a beloved nephew to me!!”
Harold Boyd Barber, 87, & Margaret Robinson Barber, 82, New Braunfels
A family member wrote, “Harold Barber & Margaret Jo (Robinson) Barber are my Grandmother Nola’s sister and brother-in-law. Two of the sweetest people you would ever meet.”
County Judge Sherman Krause signed an order at 3:00 PM yesterday directing the lowering of the flags until sundown on Sunday.
“Our hearts go out to our friends and neighbors affected by this tragedy,” Judge Krause said. “First Baptist Church and its members are in our thoughts and prayers.”
Please continue to pray for ….
Rose Mary Harris, 64, New Braunfels
Rose was airlifted to to SAMMC Hospital In San Antonio and remains in Critical Condition.
On the morning after the crash, a friend wrote, “UPDATE AS OF 8:44am this morning, 3/30/17
Rose is in good spirits, devastated with the loss of 13 of her closest brothers and sisters is Christ, but is joyous in knowing the celebration with Jesus is where they are now at peace. Rose has broken bones and is very traumatized at personally witnessing the horrific incident. Please, continued prayers for healing, and continued prayers for family and friends of loved ones now in heaven. All my love to you beautiful people…i thank each of you.”
Another friend wrote on Facebook, “Please pray healing for Rose Harris, the lone survivor from the First Baptist Church of New Braunfels bus crash yesterday. She is a very sweet and loving lady, I had Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner with her.”
Jack Dillon Young, 20, Leakey, TX
Jack was the driver of the white pickup. Jack was airlifted to University Hospital in San Antonio and is in Stable Condition.