Pablo Tiquiram Us, 29, and Jose Chilambalam Tiquiram Us, 20, were attending a memorial service for their 27-year-old brother Baltazar Tiquiram Us when they were struck and killed by an oncoming LYNX Blue Line train. One week earlier, Baltazar was killed by the same train. Police are still trying to understand what happened during the tragic double-accident.
The bizarre coincidence occurred early morning on August 3 when the two brothers were walking southbound on the same North Carolina tracks where their brother tragically died. Pablo Tiquiram Us and Jose Chilambalam Tiquiram Us ignored all safety mechanisms on the train line, including barriers, lights, and horns. They were then struck from behind by the blue line.
“We did have an incident yesterday that was very tragic,” Sgt Adam Jones from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said in a press conference Wednesday. “Two brothers were mourning the loss of another brother who had been struck last week.”
Jones continued, explaining that “this week, they had been memorializing their brother on the one-week anniversary of his death… they were conducting a memorial out by the site where he was killed, and unfortunately, the two brothers were also struck by the train while they were on foot, and they both succumbed to their injuries pretty quickly.”
Investigators recovered video footage from that night, Sgt. Adam Jones said. The video revealed that both men had reacted to the warnings before the train arrived, but weren’t fast enough. Jones said that “as the train was approaching, they appeared to look at it before they were struck.”
Jones admitted that “there was a level of impairment involved,” though it wasn’t reported what that impairment was. Jones said that Pablo Tiquiram Us and Jose Chilambalam Tiquiram Us “were lighting some candles to pay a tribute to him as best as they could on the tracks.”
“I cannot imagine losing three of your children, three of you siblings, within a week to such tragic circumstances,” Sgt Jones acknowledged. The first accident occurred a week before Pablo Tiquiram Us and Jose Chilambalam Tiquiram Us tragically died. Their brother, Baltazar Tiquiram Us, was driving a Toyota Tundra when he was struck by the LYNX Blue Line in Charlotte.
According to the Charlotte Area Transit Authority, the crash occurred around 9:50 p.m. on July 26. Baltazar’s pickup truck and a southbound LYNX Blue Line train “made contact at the Hebron Street grade crossing.” The station is off South Boulevard, near the Starmount Forest area, the transit authority said.
“The driver of the Toyota drove around the crossing arms and into the path of the Light Rail train,” police reported. “The train operator sounded the horn while it was approaching the crossing, and the crossing arms’ warning lights were operational and flashing.”
Baltazar was pronounced dead on the scene. An unnamed passenger who was riding in the Toyota Tundra during the accident was taken to a local hospital in critical condition. It isn’t clear whether the passenger has recovered from his injuries.
According to Sgt. Adam Jones, there was a level of impairment involved during the first accident. Baltazar was reportedly drunk when he attempted to cross the tracks. At the end of the press conference, Jones warned drivers not to drink and drive. He said that “I would like to stress to our citizens use a rideshare, have a designated driver, or stay where you are.”