LIBERTY COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - The wife of a longtime Lufkin minister and her mother were killed in an accident involving an 18-wheeler in Liberty County Thursday afternoon.
Tana Roy, 55, of Lufkin, the wife of Denman Avenue Baptist Church Associate Pastor Kevin Roy, and Helen Stopak, 79, died at 3:04 p.m. at the scene, located on US 59, five miles north of Cleveland.
According to the DPS report, Roy was driving a 2003 GMC Yukon southbound on US 59. Avery Norman, of Point Blank, was also driving southbound on US 59 and slowed to turn left. Roy took evasive action and left the road and overturned in the ditch. Another passenger in the Yukon, Roy's sister, Jenny Young, 52, of Bossier City, La., suffered minor injuries.
Roy and Stopak were not wearing seatbelts. Young was wearing a seatbelt.
According to the Denman Avenue Baptist Church website, Kevin Roy has served at the church since 1986. Tana Roy is also survived by daughter, Brittany, and son, Brian.
Roy worked at Etech as a project manager in Lufkin since 2004. "This is going to be hard from us; she will be missed, said Etech information technology senior vice president Ronnie Mize.
The news of the fatal accident Thursday has been difficult for everyone. "Now we're all hurting, we're in shock," Mize said. "She was part of our family and she's somebody that's really going to be missed."
Roy was on vacation Thursday headed to a Houston airport.
"Personally I took it very hard. I've worked closely with Tana for several years," said co-worker John Andrews. "We had great relationship at work and outside of work. It really hurt. The best thing about was that I know she's a Christian and I know where she is."
Church members said the family is holding up on their faith. The Roy's church and work family said they will support them with prayer through this difficult time.
"It's very difficult for us. The HR manager in Lufkin actually contacted a counselor and several of them from Audubon actually came today to the Lufkin center as well as many ministers," said Etech Human Resources V.P. Veronica Ellison. "She was a very warm lovable person."
Etech officials say a big gap will have to be filled after losing an employee like Roy.
"Even when she didn't have a smile on her face on the outside you knew she was smiling on the inside. She would that kind of person and she could make you smile," Mize said.
The smile that brightened the room will truly be missed.