Deadly crash claims four family members

Four members of a Polk County family were killed in a devastating Sunday night crash as they traveled to their home in Frostproof.

The car they were traveling in smashed into a concrete drainage culvert and broke apart into dozens of pieces.

The four dead men are brothers and cousins, and their family was too broken up to speak to us Monday.

"Oh, Jesus," said their friend, Eric Russell, who visited the crash scene on U.S. 27 several hours after it was cleaned up. "I just don't know how things like this could happen, you know?"

The culvert was broken into many pieces, and tire marks led straight into it.

"Something had to go wrong," said Russell.

Brothers Doyle Lane, 38, and Micah Watson, 33, were with their two cousins, Reginald Burnett, 29, and Ryan Dawson, 28, on their way home to Frostproof after visiting family in Lake County.

Burnett was the driver

"They are gone," said Russell. "What can we do but pray?"

Lane and Dawson were dead when rescue teams arrived, while Watson and Burnett died later at the hospital.

None of the four were wearing seatbelts.

"I don't know if wearing a seatbelt would have mattered in this crash or not," said Polk County Sheriff's spokeswoman Carrie Hortsman.

Deputies say speed may have been a factor, though they don't believe the driver had been drinking.

They are looking for a 1990's-era black Honda with a light-colored fender that was seen near the crash scene.

They don't believe the two cars ever made contact.

"We are not quite sure what happened," said Hortsman. "That's why we are looking for witnesses and maybe get this family some closure."

Family says the four were together almost all the time.

"They are my guys," said Russell. "I cooked for them and feed them everyday."