OAKDALE — Olivia Knight has spent the past week arranging her grandson's funeral and visiting her daughter and granddaughter in intensive care units at two Modesto hospitals.
"It's been a stressful week," Knight said, trying to hold back her tears. "It just came out of nowhere."
A week ago, Knight's granddaughter, grandson and the boy's father and mother were in vehicle crash near Denair. Her grandson, 4-year-old Joseph "JoJo" Chapman, and his father, 40-year-old Brian Chapman, died from their injuries.
Knight's daughter and JoJo's mother, 35-year-old Bridget Knight, and granddaughter, 17-year-old Nichole Overbay, were critically injured.
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The family will gather today about 11 a.m. for JoJo's funeral at Lakewood Memorial Cemetery on Santa Fe Avenue in Hughson.
"He was a jewel," Knight said about her grandson. "He was always so happy."
She said JoJo loved to sing, especially "You Are My Sunshine." He learned the song from a singing birthday card his grandmother gave him.
She said JoJo loved playing with 5-year-old brother Michael Chapman and 9-year-old sister Brianna Chapman. His older sisters, 19-year-old Andrea Overbay and Nich-ole, always watched over him.
Olivia Knight said JoJo's father, Brian Chapman, was a good man. Attempts to reach Chapman's family were not successful Wednesday.
"I was very fond of Brian, and he's going to be missed," she said.
JoJo, his parents and his older sister were on their way to visit a relative when the crash occurred shortly before 12:30 p.m. Aug. 20 at Barnhart Road and Santa Fe Avenue, about 1½ miles northwest of Denair.
His mother was driving a 1992 Ford Crown Victoria east on Barnhart and approaching Santa Fe. JoJo, his sister and his father were in the car.
The car stopped at a stop sign, then pulled into the path of a 2000 Ford F-250 pickup heading north on Santa Fe about 55 mph, the California Highway Patrol reported.
The pickup hit the car's right front side. The CHP said Denair resident Lindsey Plett, 26, was driving the pickup.
JoJo's mother and his older sister won't attend his funeral. They remain unconscious under heavy sedation, according to their family.
On Wednesday afternoon, Olivia Knight said her daughter was listed in critical but stable condition at Doctors Medical Center, while her granddaughter was listed in critical condition at Memorial Medical Center.
She said her daughter was not showing signs of improvement, while her granddaughter appeared to be improving.
"Neither of them knows about what happened to JoJo or Brian," Olivia Knight said. "That's a conversation I'm dreading."
Bee staff writer Rosalio Ahumada can be reached at email@example.com or 578-2394.