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Fathers of teens killed in crash testify during automaker suit

By Paige Sedgewick, Reporter, psedgewick@kcfw.com
Published On: Apr 30 2014 10:10:32 PM MDT
Updated On: Apr 30 2014 10:41:52 PM MDT

Jurors listened to emotional testimony during day three of the Olson versus Hyundai case in Lake County.

The parents of cousins Tanner and Trevor Olson are suing Hyundai for the fatal car crash in 2011 that killed three people.

POLSON, Mont. -

Jurors listened to emotional testimony during day three of the Olson versus Hyundai case in Lake County.

The parents of cousins Tanner and Trevor Olson are suing Hyundai for the fatal car crash in 2011 that killed three people.

The parents of the Olson boys claim a steering knuckle defect is what caused the crash.

Wednesday, the jury heard from a woman who claims she had similar issues with her car, but the defense claims distracted driving caused the vehicle to crash.

The emotional testimony of two fathers left the courtroom silent.

"I think for me, in life, everybody has a mission and a purpose. And that mission and purpose for me was my kids, and when you lose somebody like that, your mission and purpose in life is taken away," said Jay Olson, Tanner’s father. 

"The hardest part as a father is to try to be that rock for your family, for your kids, your wife," said David Olson, Trevor’s father.

It's been 3 years since the accident, but Tanner's father can never forget the phone call he received that night from Montana Highway Patrol.

"There had been an accident, and the boys had been killed," said Jay.

The two boys were heading to a house on Flathead Lake to celebrate the Fourth of July with family and friends.

Trevor's parents went camping for the night. After the wreck another family member went to the campsite to break the news.

"He said our son Trevor and Tanner had died in an automobile accent," said David.

According to the fathers, the boys shared a bond like no other.

"I've never seen a relationship of cousins, especially with 5 years difference. They were inseparable," said Jay.

"They just had a bond that was much more brotherly or best friendy than it is cousins," continued David.

The trial is scheduled to continue Thursday.  They plan on going through customer recalls and complaints of Hyundai vehicles.