Victims of the deadly tour bus crash in Mexico identified

Dec 21, 2017

A cruise holiday turned into a nightmare when a tour bus lost control and flipped over on a highway in Mexico on Tuesday. The accident caused the deaths of 13 people who arrived in Costa Maya on the cruise ships Serenade of the Sea and Celebrity Equinox. Another 18 passengers were injured. Eight Americans, two Swedes, a Canadian and a Mexican tour guide died as a result of the bus crash, 

Among the tourists who died in the bus crash in southeastern Mexico are Andy Fritz and his wife Jody Fritz, both aged 51. The South Sound couple were local educators. Andy was working at Clover Park Technical College as environmental science instructor, and he was well known in the South Sound running community. Jody was Elementary Assistant Principal at Sand Hill Elementary near Belfair.

Bob Bever from Athens, Tennessee is among the victims. His wife Barb and two daughters were also on the bus. They are currently recovering from their injuries from the crash in hospital.

Stephanie Horwood from Gatineau, Quebec, Canada suffered serious head injuries and died while in an ambulance heading to the hospital. Her husband Fred Reinthaler, and their children, aged 9 and 11, were also injured in the crash.

Three family members were among the dead. Anna Behar of Lorton, Virginia, aged 46, and her 11-year-old son Daniel was confirmed killed. Behar’s mother, Fanya Shamis of Coconut Creek, Florida, aged 78 also died in the crash.

The Mexican tour guide, identified as Manuel C also died.

The Swedish foreign ministry confirmed that Swedes from Sveland region were among the victims. "Two people from Sweden have died, another two have been injured," spokesperson Rasmus Eljanskog said.

18 injured tourists were taken to three local hospitals

Hospitalized in Bacalar – Centro Comunitario de Bacalar are Barbara aged 43 and Gina B. aged 66 and Stephanie Y. aged 40, from the United States; together with Alexander and Goeran B. from Sweden. 

Hospitalized in Tulum - Costa Med Hospital are two children with initials SR, LR aged 9 and 11 and their father Frederick R., aged 51 years from the United States. 

Finally, at the Carranza Hospital in Chetumal are Rachel J., Rebeka M. and Cristiano SM, from Brazil.

The following passengers sustained minor injuries Mary W., Michael W., Chiara M., Pietro P., Vitor J., Fernanda F. and Reginaldo F. and were sent back on Serenade of the Seas and Celebrity Equinox.

Although it was initially mentioned that the crash of the bus, a Mercedes Benz with license plates 82RA7V, could have occurred due to the explosion of a tire, everything seems to indicate that the driver, Luis SN, was distracted or fell asleep behind the wheel. The bus driver was hospitalized and could face criminal charges, the state prosecutor said.