Kenedy, TX — Texas DPS troopers have identified 25-year old Alexander Smalling as one of the four men who was killed last Sunday morning (May 19, 2013) after a fatal accident on Highway 72. They stated that four men were killed and a motorcyclist was injured after an accident with an 18-wheeler at about 12:15 a.m. just south of Kenedy.

According to their reports, a Honda Civic was westbound on Highway 72 early Sunday morning and was carrying four men, including Smalling. The men in the Honda plus a motorcyclist in front of them were reportedly working for J.C. Fodale Energy Services and were headed back to a drilling rig site that morning.

Near FM 1145, both the motorcycle and the Honda tried to pass an 18-wheeler along Highway 72 as it was making a left-hand turn at the intersection. As both vehicles swerved into the opposite lanes of traffic, the motorcyclist laid down his bike in an effort to avoid a collision and proceeded to slide underneath the trailer of the 18-wheeler.

The Honda was unable to avoid the collision and slammed into the back-right portion of the truck’s trailer, killing all four men inside immediately, including Alexander Smalling. The motorcyclist, who was listed as 28-year old Phillip Bartref, was taken to a nearby hospital by responding paramedics to be treated for serious injuries.

DPS troopers remained at the scene for several hours conducting their investigation, noting that the Honda and motorcycle had just come from Desperados Saloon – a nearby bar in Kenedy. The matter remains under investigation and the names of the other victims have not been released.

Scene of the Accident


Many people would look at this accident and assume that either the 18-wheeler made an illegal turn or the other two vehicles tried to execute an improper pass on the highway. However, I would like to point out to my readers that this accident is an example of why an early investigation is incredibly important. First, we don’t know all the facts here, but the news reports are claiming that the victims had just come from a nearby bar in the early morning hours. Now, if alcohol played a role in this accident, I would certainly recommend that an in-depth investigation into that bar be launched. Why? There may be more to this accident than meets the eye; just as a driver has a responsibility to remain sober behind the wheel, a licensed bar in Texas has a responsibility not to over-serve alcohol to a customer who is already intoxicated. When this happens, it’s not only a violation of the TABC, but Texas Dram Shop Law states that the bar can be held liable for an accident if that customer is allowed to leave and get behind the wheel. In many cases, video footage and sales receipts can be recovered if the investigation process is started early enough. However, it’s not uncommon for a bar to try and cover its tracks to avoid suspicion after an accident as serious as this one.


— Grossman Law Offices

Recent Comments to the Blog

Jason is back to work and is now playing Sled Hockey and wheelchair rugby!! Jason is the strongest and most amazing man! He may nly have 1/2 a leg, but that is ALL he is lacking!! Thanks to prayer and GOD and awsome first responders and Baylor doctors. Jason's wife, Sheila
— Sheila
I'm a former employee. I had brought up this exact scenario and suggested a maintenance procedure that would eliminate the possibility of this type injury. Obviously my warning went unheeded.
— Tophat
I was actually a couple cars back from this wreck, one of the first on the scene, and helped administer CPR on the victims. The truck driver was going way too fast, but it was actually his trailer that swung around and hit the suv, the semi-truck ended in the median.
— Leif Burton
I appreciate how you've commentated on this tragedy--informative, with questions, but not hurtful. I live within 30 mins of this crash site, and I am appalled at the entire situation :(. I can't even begin to understand what could have happened to make this come to fruition, but I will be keeping up with it so I can learn what investigations bring to light about how something awful like this could happen. Rest in peace, Thomas, Carolyn and Carolyn...
— Summer
I am Anthony Siffords daughter. im 13 and i miss my dad i just wanted everyone to know that he is in a better place now and i would to thank everyone for the support. i miss my dad but it was amazing to see how many people had been toughed by my dad god bless thanks for everything...
— Hannah Sifford
I am Rodney Palmer's sister-inlaw. I am amazed and grateful for all the heartfelt wishes and support for our family... It is difficult indeed to put our thoughts into words, but we very much appreciate your kind and helpful words at a time when these things mean so much. Losing someone as special as Rodney has been tough, but knowing the he has touched so many people's lives keeps my sister's strengthens our family.
— Maureen
A lot of people say smack about lawyers, but I want to say that I'm glad there is a way that people who are wronged by corporate neglect can get justice and force change. We are living in a world where corporations and govt care less than ever about common people, and I support your work. I hope I will never need your services.
— Martin Onasis
My friend Michael was the one who got hit by this train. This is the ONLY article I can find on it!! How is that possible? It happened almost 5 days ago! Thank you for actually caring about us "no name" people. I hope when more information comes in you will post it as soon as you can. Thank you again!! God bless you
— Leslie
Tony was the step Grant father and it's been hard for the whole family but we know he is in a better place now. It's nice to know that people are rasing awareness with my grandfathers story. Thanks, family and friends of Tony Wray.
— Mercedes Stanley
Thank you for posting these accident articles on your site. At the company that I work for, e deal with monitoring construction activity and work around trenches and all sorts of construction equipment/vehicles. I sometimes wonder if construction companies have enough safety training to inform employees of how to protect themselves while on the job.
— Erik Hofmann
I'd like to thank you for giving my cousin's death some type of recognition and letting our family know he is not a lost cause. Thank you <3
— Victoria

Responses (2)

  1. I am a good friend of Alex or Frodo as we called him and another one of the victims they weretwo of the greatest friends a man could have the type of men to give you the shirt of their back or drop everything they were doing if you needed them they where great guys and will be truly missed I loved them very much and will always have them in my heart!!

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