Three Children Killed In Rollover Crash Near Hayti, MO

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(Pemiscot County, MO) An SUV crash on I-55 near Hayti, Missouri killed three children and sent seven others to the hospital.

Four of those injured were children.

Investigators believe none of the passengers had seatbelts or car seats and were all thrown from the vehicle. 

Monday Chester Kelley of Wardell Missouri dropped to one knee and prayed for the  victims of Sunday's deadly crash a tragedy he witnessed first hand,

"This SUV or Explorer, it left the roadway and it started flipping, just throwing bodies everywhere."

The 1999 Ford was carrying three adults and seven children when it crashed.

Missouri State Police said the passengers were headed home to Jackson, Mississippi when a tire blew out close to the Hayti, MO exit.

That's when Chester Kelley said the SUV started to roll, "It turned over eight or nine times."

All ten people were ejected.

A 13-year-old, a 10-year-old and an infant were killed.

Investigators said none of the passengers were wearing seat belts and a car seat wasn't belted down.

The crash happened within a mile of the Pemiscot County Memorial Hospital.

Debra Clark, Chief Nursing Officer, said paramedics acted quickly, "Our ambulance was first on the scene, quickly assessed the situation, phoned back into our emergency room and we contacted Air Evac."

Several of the passengers were taken to the Pemiscot Hospital, others were airlifted to Memphis. 

Clark told us even though the ER was well staffed at the time, many "off duty" nurses heard about the accident and wanted to help, "The nurses in our community heard about it and they showed up at the ER and volunteered their services. they said, 'what can we do to help?'"

Clark said the crash left an emotional impact on the staff, "It was very, very hard for the paramedics and nurses on staff. Especially because  of the children."