Family raising money after father, son die in Christmas Eve crash

A family in Lake County is mourning the loss of a father and son killed in a crash on Christmas Eve.

When Lloyd Wicks saw the fiery crash off State Road 46 on Christmas Eve, he hoped whoever was inside was OK. 

He didn't know how close tragedy would hit home. 

"Recognized the car, but a lot of cars are similar," Lloyd Wicks said. "Made some phone calls to be sure. We were not able to reach my nephew or brother-in-law which was unusual. That sparked everything to get back to the scene." 

Hours after his instincts told him something wasn't right, his family's worst fears were confirmed. 

"They gave us information that it was registered to my sister and [my] brother-in-law was driving."

Wicks says his brother-in-law and nephew were headed home after doing some last-minute Christmas and birthday shopping. His sister’s birthday was Christmas Eve. 

Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) say a vehicle traveling on the opposite side of State Road 46 crossed traffic and hit a vehicle on the westbound side. 

Wicks says Tommy and Thomas Silverstris were in the vehicle that was hit. Both were killed. 

"A lot to take in. A lot to process," Wicks said. 

Wicks says the father and son duo were A/C technicians who fiercely loved family. 

He says in an instant his sister’s family lost a husband and son, and the backbones of the household.

"Both Tommy and Thomas were the breadwinners in the family, so the income is not there now. Three young grandchildren that they have to raise," Wicks said.  

FHP's crash report noted the driver of the vehicle crossed traffic for an unknown reason. The driver in the vehicle had minor injuries. 

If you're interested in helping the family, you can donate to the GoFundMe by clicking: Fundraiser by Lloyd Wicks : Funeral Cost for Tommy and Thomas Silvestris (