May 31, 2014 1:31 PM by Dave Fields/CS
Louisiana State Troopers confirm that a fifth person, 24-year-old Joshua Lejeune, has died in a fatal head-on collision south of Eunice Friday afternoon.
Lejeune, along with 22 year old Jacob Courville of Eunice, 44-year-old Laura Bartram, and her son 23-year-old Justin Bartram of Opelousas, were in the 2005 Honda Civic that for reasons unknown crossed the centerline on LA 13 near Perchville Road.
Around 2:30 p.m., the Honda Civic struck a 2002 Chevrolet Tahoe driven by 48-year-old Mamou resident Chaman Richardson, head-on.
Jacob Courville, Laura Bartram, and Justin Bartram were pronounced dead at the scene by the Acadia Parish Coroner. Courville was wearing a seat belt; the Bartrams and Lejeune were not.
Lejeune was air-lifted in critical condition to Lafayette General Medical Center. Family members indicate that Lejeune suffered internal injuries, and died while hospitalized about five hours after the accident.
According to his family, Lejeune briefly was conscious at the scene. He was able to disclose a phone number to first responders, but wasn't able to provide an explanation for how the accident may have occurred.
Lejeune's uncle tells KATC that his nephew, a former resident of Port Barre, had returned only a couple of years ago from service overseas with the National Guard.
Richardson, driver of the Chevrolet Tahoe, was restrained and was transported to a local hospital with moderate injuries. Richardson's current condition is not known at this time.
A passenger in Richardson's vehicle, 29-year-old Jamie Prejean of Mamou, was unrestrained and also was pronounced dead at the scene by the Acadia Parish Coroner.
Although the crash remains under investigation, routine toxicology samples were taken for submission to the State Police Crime Lab for analysis.