Several small communities across south-central Alberta, including Beiseker and Irricana, are banding together in support of a ranching family who tragically lost two members in a recent motor vehicle collision in the United States.
The Larson family from Duchess, Alta. travelled to South Dakota this past week to pick up bucking bulls for their Alberta ranch.
During their trip, Darsey and Kyle Larson along with their son, Koye Larson, were allegedly hit by a drunk driver, killing both Darsey and Koye.
Family friends stated Darsey grew up in Irricana and went to school in Beiseker, where she briefly worked at a hair salon.
According to preliminary information from the South Dakota Highway Patrol, a Ford F-150 pick-up truck was driving westbound on U.S. Highway 18 east of Colome when it crossed the centre line and collided head on with an eastbound GMC Sierra 3500 pick-up that was pulling a cattle trailer.
The report states that a 40-year-old female and a 14-year-old male in the GMC pick-up died in hospital as a result of their injuries, while the 45-year-old male driver suffered life-threatening injuries and was airlifted to a Sioux Falls hospital. All three occupants were wearing seat belts.
Three of the four occupants of the Ford pick-up – the 33-year-old male driver, a 36-year-old male passenger, and a 32-year-old female passenger – sustained serious but non-life threatening injuries and were transported to Sioux Falls hospitals. A 17-year-old male received minor injuries and all but the female occupant wore seatbelts.
South Dakota Highway Patrol continues to investigate the crash and charges are pending against the driver of the F-150.
According to friends of the Larson family in Alberta, Kyle Larson remains in the hospital in Sioux Falls, but is in stable condition.
The Larsons also have a daughter who was staying with her grandparents in Alberta and is now awaiting her father's return from the U.S. hospital.
A Larson Family Benefit Auction Facebook page was set up to help the family with medical costs in the United States and offset some of the expenses associated with the accident happening out of the country.
The page described Darsey as a young wife, a mother to two great children, and a big part of the community.
Buck Christman, a longtime friend of the family, said the auction is currently live online until July 17. He explained people can go to the Larson Family Benefit page and either donate an item or bid in the comments on the items that are already listed.
The auction is live online until July 17 and can be found at bit.ly/3As1Brg