38 Special Rocker Hospitalized After Fatal Boat Crash

by Shelby Scott

1980s rock band member Earl S. Brookins, more commonly known as Steve Brookins from the band 38 Special, was involved in a fatal boat crash last week. He is currently hospitalized with non-critical injuries. The crash, which resulted in the death of one other passenger, remains under investigation.

According to News4Jax, Brookins and a woman known to be his best friend, Heather Anan, had reportedly been enjoying a day on the water when their boat, traveling at high speeds, struck a dock in Clay County, Florida’s Black Creek. As per the outlet, Anan was ejected from the boat and died following the crash. She reportedly died on impact.

Meanwhile, Brookins, still recovering from his injuries, sustained head, back, and arm injuries.

News4JAX first identified the 38 Special band member. The outlet further reports the wrecked boat was about 20 feet in length and was traveling westward when it crashed near Creekside Trail. Police reports state Brookins’ boat had been traveling between 50 and 60 miles per hour, with authorities still working to determine whether or not alcohol had been involved.

38 Special experienced its heyday between the late 70s and 80s. Steve Brookins served as the band’s drummer during that time, exiting the group in 1987. Their biggest hits include “Hold On Loosely” (1981) and “Caught up in You” (1982). The news outlet reports these music choices remain so popular today, they actually feature in various TV shows, films, and even video games.

Victim’s Mother Holds ‘No Ill Will’ Toward 38 Special Rocker

Despite the tragic circumstances, not to mention the ongoing investigation, surrounding Brookins’ best friend’s death, Anan’s mother, Rebekah Elrod, seems to hold no grudge against the former 38 Special band member. In fact, as authorities continue to investigate the boat crash, she believes the tragedy was the result of nothing more than an accident.

In speaking with the news outlet, Elrod said Steve Brookins has been a friend of the family for more than a decade. To Brookins himself, the victim’s mother said, “Accidents happen. I don’t want you to feel that guilt.”

Certainly, the boat crash was not the result of inexperience. Elrod further shared that Brookins and Anan’s outing on the water was extremely typical.

“They were just out on the boat,” she said. “It was in the morning, they had music playing. They went out on the boat all the time.”

In the end, Elrod’s biggest concern was to confirm that her daughter hadn’t suffered following the crash. As authorities investigate Brookins’ injuries and Anan’s death, her mother revealed, “The police officers, I asked them time again, I need to know, did she see it coming?”

Fortunately, she received confirmation that her daughter and Steve Brookins’ best friend did not confront her death. Instead, Elrod said, “she did not see it coming and she died on impact. As a mom, that’s good for me.”