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Cranbrook community steps up in huge way after mom and twin daughters die in crash

Nearly $65,000 has been raised to support the family of a mom and her young twin daughters who died in a multi-vehicle crash near Cranbrook last week.

Courtney Johnson, 42, and her twin daughters Taylor and Hailey, both eight, have been identified as victims of the fatal Hwy 3 crash on June 1.

The children, born in Calgary before moving to Cranbrook and eventually settling in nearby Jaffray, are being remembered as an “integral part” of the community.

“Taylor and Hailey were pure magic, sunshine in human form. They brightened up everyone's lives from the moment they came into our family,” their obituary reads.

“They taught us all how to be more playful, curious and lighthearted. There will always be a place in our hearts where we hold them.”

Courtney, meanwhile, is being remembered as someone with an “infectious smile and laugh” who could brighten any room.

“She was able to show true empathy to all, which resonates in her five children,” her obituary says. “Becoming a mother to each of her children were her proudest moments.”

Courtney is survived by her sons Chase and Tripp, and daughter Kinley, who along with their father Matt are left to mourn the tragic loss of their three family members.

A GoFundMe created to support the family through these unimaginable times shot past its $10,000 goal and has raised more than six times that amount in four days.

“This has been an absolutely devastating and heartbreaking loss for Matt, the family, and both the communities of Jaffray and Cranbrook,” the GoFundMe explains.

“Matt has been a longtime volunteer for and member of the Cranbrook Eagles Boxing Club here in town, and has enriched our community of Cranbrook in so many ways. In Jaffray, Matt drove the school bus and volunteered for lunch duties at the local school to be close to his girls and help the community.”

To show a sense of Matt’s character, the GoFundMe provided an update earlier this week that says the grieving father and husband will be using the funds to create a legacy fund in Taylor and Hailey’s name.

It will be used to give back to the community in times of need.

The fatal crash happened around 8 am on June 1 as Courtney was driving Taylor and Hailey to school.

Police have said that a “mechanical failure” caused a logging truck to cross the centre line to veer across the centre line of Hwy 3 and into the Johnson’s Suburban.

Tragically, Courtney, Taylor and Hailey were all pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the commercial vehicle was taken to hospital with serious injuries.

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