DPS report shows man blamed double fatality on sunlight and not paying attention

Danielle Cooks
Danielle Cooks

By Jeff Awtrey - email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - A Palestine man attributed sunlight and not paying attention as factors in a wreck which killed two Tenaha children as they waited for the school bus, according to a DPS report.

The report, which KTRE obtained through an open records request, states the following:

"Driver of Unit#1 had the morning sun directly in his eyes and was not paying attention. Driver of Unit#1 took evasive action to avoid a crash with the vehicles in front of him and Failed to Drive in Single Lane."

Charges against Eloy David Lara, 22, are pending, the report stated.

The wreck, which occurred on April 21, killed two children, JaLyric Boykins, 7, and her brother, Nathan Cooks, 5. Their 14-year-old aunt, Danielle Cooks, was hospitalized.

According to Tenaha ISD Principal Scott Tyner, Cooks is "doing real well" and staying in a rehabilitation facility after successful surgeries. Tyner said she still has some recovering to do and her mobility is still limited but she is on "track and doing well."