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Family, friends remembering 2 Lamar University students killed in head-on crash with suspected drunk driver

Family members said the victims, Clyde Thompson and Tonysha Smith, were close friends. Both were only 19 years old.

BEAUMONT, Texas — Two Lamar University students’ lives were cut short by a suspected drunk driver over the weekend.

Family members said the victims, Clyde Thompson and Tonysha Smith, were close friends. Both were only 19 years old.

Not only were they close friends, but the two attended the university together. And Thompson's twin sister lived with Smith at the dorms.

Thompson and his fellow classmate were driving back to Lamar University after a late Sunday night food run when the unthinkable happened.

Police said their car was struck head-on by a wrong-way driver.
and they believe alcohol was a factor in this crash.

"He was robbed the first time and this time he was completely robbed. 19 bright future, he knew what he wanted," Johnson said.

Tamala Johnson is Clyde's mom she said Clyde was a sophomore at Lamar studying kinesiology.

"He wanted to be a spokesperson to young kids of his age that are going through therapy or stuck in ICU and don't see a way just to go and talk to him," Johnson said.

In a tragic twist, this is the second time Thompson was hit. In may 2019 as he was jogging home from playing basketball, a drunk driver struck his body.

He had a lengthy recovery in the hospital, but he survived.

"For this to happen it's just unreal, you know, to get killed by the very thing You survived. It hurts," Johnson said.

The passenger in Thompson's car was 19-year-old Smith, she was a sophomore nursing student.

The two were close friends and shared another connection. Smith was the roommate of Thompson’s twin sister.

"It's so hard for her because not only did she lose her brother, but she lost her best friend," Johnson said.

The Smith family didn’t want to speak on camera but they want their Tonisha to be remembered as an intelligent, kind, and protective sister who loved her family.

The driver who police say struck the two remains in the hospital. Police have released that person's name but since they have not been charged, we are not releasing it.

Both families are getting funeral arrangements in order and a GoFundMe account has been set up for Thompson. You can also donate to Smith's GoFundMe account here.

RELATED: 'Long Live Clyde' | Family reaches out to memorialize ‘tough, fearless’ twin brother killed in alleged drunk driving accident in Beaumont

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