Four students at North Dakota State University were killed in a car crash Monday during a snow storm on Interstate 94 in Minnesota.
The students, all women, died when their car crossed the median and was broadsided by an SUV. The AP reports heavy snow, fog, strong winds and temperatures near freezing made travel difficult in the region.
The women were identified as Lauren J. Peterson, Jordan N. Playle, Megan R. Sample, and Danielle R. Renninger. They were heading back to school at NDSU from Minneapolis, Minn. after visiting family over the long holiday weekend. Three of the students, Playle, Renninger and Sample, were roommates.
"We had the most amazing weekend," Michael Renninger, Danielle's father, told the AP Tuesday, fighting back tears. "She was so thankful for life. She was making comments about how wonderful her life is. It was just so strange, thinking of it now."
The SUV that hit the women's car was struck from behind by a third vehicle, the Austin Post-Bulletin reported.
"A car heading westbound lost control, crossed the median, and hit the Suburban in front of us head-on," Kari Christensen, driver of the car that hit the SUV, wrote on her Facebook page. "It all happened in a split second. I had no time to get us out of the way of the Suburban."
The driver of the Suburban was hospitalized.
Grief counselors are now making themselves available at the campus of NDSU.
"I don't believe I have ever been faced with this type of tragedy of this magnitude," Prakash Mathew, NDSU's vice president of student affairs, told the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
Three of the four girls in the crash lived together in a suite on campus. Their fourth roommate in the suite, who was not in the car crash, has reportedly returned to her family in West Fargo.