Port Royal mom killed in crash could make anyone feel ‘like a lifelong friend’

An online fundraiser was started for the Dyer family after they were involved in a car wreck early Saturday morning in Burton.
An online fundraiser was started for the Dyer family after they were involved in a car wreck early Saturday morning in Burton. GoFundMe

Stacey Dyer and her family had just gotten a pool for their house over the summer.

She recently accepted a new job where she left a valued longtime work family for the chance to better support her own family and advance her career.

The Dyers liked to pile in the car with friends for road trips to Jacksonville Zoo or the S.C. Aquarium in Charleston.

Friends and family will have the chance Wednesday to remember Dyer, the Port Royal woman who died this week after she was involved in a car crash while leaving town with her family for Thanksgiving over the weekend.

A memorial service is planned for 1 p.m. Wednesday at Community Bible Church on Parris Island Gateway, said Dyer’s friend and former coworker Latesha McComas. All are welcome, McComas said.

Dyer and her family were in a Dodge pickup truck stopped at a stoplight when the truck was hit from behind by a 2018 Chevrolet Suburban — a Beaufort County EMS vehicle — on Trask Parkway at Bruce K. Smalls Drive just before 6 a.m. Saturday, according to the S.C. Highway Patrol and a GoFundMe page established for the family.

Dyer was flown to MUSC, and her 8-year-old daughter, Sophia, was flown to Savannah.

Dyer, 42, was pronounced dead at 7:20 p.m. Monday at Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, the Beaufort County Coroner’s Office said. Sophia is recovering in intensive care at Memorial Health in Savannah, McComas said.

Sophia, a student at Bridges Preparatory School, is awake and responsive in the ICU, McComas said.

“We want to make sure everyone knows she is doing well and the prognosis is looking good for her,” she said.

Two of Dyer’s other daughters were injured in the crash, 12-year-old Emma has a slight fracture to her ankle and 18-year-old Lexi has a hematoma on one leg. Dyer’s 6-year-old son, Dax, was in a booster car seat in the backseat and was not hurt, McComas said.

Dyer’s husband, Vaughn, was driving the truck and has soreness in his neck and back, McComas said.

The driver of the EMS vehicle was taken to Beaufort Memorial Hospital and later transferred to Memorial Health in Savannah, Highway Patrol Lance Cpl. Matt Southern said. He was still in the hospital in good condition Tuesday afternoon, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Two phone messages for county EMS director Donna Ownby on Monday afternoon and a phone message Tuesday were not returned.

A Highway Patrol accident investigation team is investigating the wreck and its cause, Southern said. No charges have been filed.

Dyer worked at Technical College of the Lowcountry for seven years before leaving for another job earlier this month. She was a licensed CPA who, as a controller for the school, played an important role and helped facilitate a scholarship program, said Mary Lee Carns, TCL’s vice president of advancement.

“There’s a cloud over the TCL family,” Carns said. “We’ve lost an important member of the college family. Right now our thoughts and prayers are with Stacey’s family, especially with her husband and her children.”

The Dyers, who live in the Shell Point area, were on their way to Ohio to visit family for Thanksgiving when the crash occurred.

The GoFundMe page established for medical costs and other expenses related to family travel and care had raised more than $18,000 as of Tuesday afternoon.

A reception will follow the memorial service Wednesday for visitors to have a chance to meet with the family, McComas said.

McComas, with only one child of her own, said she had recently bought an eight-passenger Honda Odyssey minivan so that the families could travel together to places like the zoo and aquarium. She remembered Dyer as a good coworker and supervisor who often reached beyond her normal duties.

“Even people who met her for the first time felt like she had been a lifelong friend to them,” McComas said.

Memorial service for Stacey Dyer

A memorial service for Stacey Dyer will be held at Community Bible Church on Parris Island Gateway at 1 p.m. Wednesday. A reception will follow.

Correction: An earlier version of this story said Stacey Dyer was from Beaufort. She lived in the Shell Point area.