GoFundMe for Family Who Lost 3 Children in Wrong-Way Crash Hits Half a Million Dollars

A Louisiana family that lost three children in a deadly interstate crash has raised more than half a million dollars in donations.

Members of the Simmons family were driving on Interstate 49 in St. Landry Parish, Louisiana, when they were struck by alleged drunk driver John Lundy, who was killed in the crash.

Katie Simmons DeRouen, the second-oldest sibling out of nine, organized the fundraiser on the GoFundMe platform to help support her parents after the loss of their children Lindy Rae, Christopher and Kamryn.

"Please know that I am not asking or begging for money," DeRouen wrote. "I am simply a hopeless daughter who's trying to think of anyway that I could make this even .000000001% better for my mom and dad in the very dark days to come."

Help seems to be pouring in. As of this writing, the GoFundMe page has raised $576,890 with over 12,200 donors. DeRouen took to Facebook on Tuesday to write a thank you to donors and supporters.

"The outpouring of love and support is just astonishing. I am in awe of how God is showing up during this storm," she wrote. "My mom is so worried about returning to work—of course—and I was trying to explain to her that she REALLY won't have to worry about that for a long time. She just kept asking if it—the GoFundMe—was real. Guys, just LOOK at how amazing this campaign is. It brings me to tears because my momma deserves the WORLD, and I know that she will be able to have at least one less thing to stress about."

The GoFundMe to help support the Simmons family can be found here.

Stock Image Police Lights
Members of the Simmons family were driving on Interstate 49 in St. Landry Parish, Louisiana, when they were struck by a wrong-way driver in a crash that remains under investigation. Shown above are the lights of a police vehicle in Philadelphia on Thursday, June 24. Matt Rourke/AP Photo

John Dalton Rohr, a photographer and former Mississippi State University track and cross country competitor, was listed as a "Top Donor." He used his social media presence to encourage others to give to the online campaign in a post Sunday.

Rohr and his brother were one of the first cars to stop and help, calling 911 as they approached the wreck. They've lost friends in car accidents, so they wanted to help how they could, even after they returned home.

"No one should have to go through such tragedy and heartbreak," Rohr told The Advertiser. "I wish there was more I could do or could have done. Money and words can't bring loved ones back, but it's my wish that they find peace during this dark time."

Investigators took toxicology samples from Lundy and Lindy Rae Simmons, who was driving the SUV with the family members. Results are still pending and the crash remains under investigation, said Thomas Gossen, a trooper and spokesperson for the Louisiana State Police.

DeRouen said she was at a Christmas party when she got the call Friday that her mom and three youngest siblings had been involved in a wreck. She rushed to three hospitals in an effort to locate her family. Instead of providing comfort, however, she was tasked with identifying bodies.

Twenty-year-old Lindy Rae Simmons, 17-year-old Christopher Simmons and 15-year-old Kamryn Simmons were dead. Christopher Simmons' 16-year-old girlfriend, Marissa Darby, was also in the vehicle and suffered critical injuries.

DeRouen is the second born of nine. Her father, Ray Simmons, retired from Cleco a few weeks ago, and her mother, Dawn Simmons, worked as a mail carrier before the crash.

"We went from our 'big family of nine kids' to six kids in the blink of an eye," DeRouen said. "I don't know how we will ever move on or recover from this."

Dawn Simmons suffered numerous injuries in the wreck, including a bleeding spleen, punctured lung, two broken ankles, a broken leg and broken wrists. A doctor told the family she would not be able to walk "like normal" for about a year because of the severity of the bone fractures, the family said.

On Tuesday, DeRouen said her mom is doing well and is "completely herself."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.