NewsHillsborough County


Parents of 2-month-old killed in I-75 crash urge drivers to pay more attention

"He was always so happy"
Posted at 3:40 PM, Aug 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-17 12:33:04-04

TAMPA, Fla. — The family of 2-month-old Asher Gaspard are devastated.

"He was always so happy. I would talk to him, and would tell him how much I loved him," said his mother, Fritzy Gaspard.

She says mornings spent with Asher after he was born were incredibly special. She says he would coo a lot after he finished eating.

"I told him he's here for a reason, for a mission, that God sent him to us on purpose."

Now, she feels he's serving a higher purpose. He was killed after a dump truck slammed into the back of the car Fritzy was driving on August 6.

Baby Asher was one of two people killed in the crash on I-75 near the I-4 interchange.

"My wife and kids were heading to the store to get school supplies for our daughter. There was a lot of traffic and some rain. Traffic came to a stop, they stopped, and moments later they were rear-ended by the truck," said Reggie Gaspard, Asher's father.

Charges are now pending against the driver of the truck. The crash involved a total of eight vehicles and closed down I-75 south for hours.

RELATED: 2-month-old dies after I-75 crash involving dump truck

State troopers responded a little after 2:30 p.m.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the dump truck was driven by 74-year-old Daniel Ragan of Spring Hill. The truck collided with two other cars then overturned onto a van driven by 46-year-old David Garcia, of Inverness.

Garcia died at the scene.

The overturned dump truck then continued to skid and collided with five other cars.

Gaspard was a passenger in one of the first cars the dump truck hit. He was rushed to Tampa General Hospital but didn't make it.

Troopers say alcohol was not a factor in the crash.

Gaspard's parents say while they don't know why the driver of the truck didn't stop, they say this is a reminder to everyone to make sure you pay attention to the road.

"I do know people text and drive, not paying attention, eating and driving, whatever else and driving. They're doing it. I just urge people to be more cautious. You just never know," Reggie said. "It's unfortunate because it happens all the time. You would think with people seeing the outcome [of crashes] that people would not do that."