HOUSTON — Three people, including two cadets from Texas A&M University, were killed in a head-on collision early Sunday morning on Highway 290 in Waller, according to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.
Amy Pacheco, 18, and Miguel Hernandez, 18 — both freshman students in the Texas A&M Corps of Cadets — died when the SUV they were traveling in collided with a sports car, driven by Katie Thomas, 21. Thomas also died in the collision.
Another freshman cadet traveling in the SUV, Francisco Campos, 18, was injured in the accident and was transported to a local hospital in stable condition. Campos, who was described as Pacheco's boyfriend, is expected to recover for his injuries.
The deaths of the two cadets has left the Corps and A&M community reeling.
"We in the Corps of Cadets and at Texas A&M University, are in mourning over the loss of two of our cadets in a tragic car accident early this morning," Brig. Gen. Joe E. Ramirez Jr., commandant of the Corps of Cadets, said. "We offer our sincerest condolences, thoughts and prayers to their family and friends and ask everyone to respect these families and our cadets as we mourn during these trying times."
Deputies said that at about 3:30 a.m., Thomas was driving a white 2005 Ford Mustang heading the wrong way in the westbound lanes on Highway 290 near Binford Road when her car collided with white Ford Explorer driven by Pacheco.
The HCSO said that the collision caused the Mustang to rotate clockwise and come to a rest on the inside shoulder.
The SUV continued westbound and stopped on the outside shoulder. The vehicle became fully engulfed in flames after the collision. Pacheco and Hernandez, who was sitting in the backseat, were not able to escape the vehicle.
HSCO said the two cadets and Thomas died at the scene of the accident.
The cadets were heading back to College Station for an official function on Sunday morning when the accident occurred. They had spent Saturday judging a drill competition at a Houston ISD.
Deputies found beer bottles in the Mustang, and alcohol is believed to be a factor in the accident.