Teen killed, 4 injured in Minooka crash
BY BRIAN STANLEY firstname.lastname@example.org April 22, 2013 9:10AM
Updated: April 22, 2013 6:18PM
MINOOKA — A 15-year-old Channahon girl was killed and four other people were hurt in a car crash Sunday night, authorities said.
The crash happened at 7:56 p.m. when the driver of an Infiniti carrying four Channahon teenagers northbound on McLinden Road ran the stop sign at U.S. 6., Minooka Police Chief Justin Meyer said. The driver’s side of the Infiniti was T-boned by a Honda Civic driven by a 26-year-old Minooka woman, Meyer said.
Elizabeth Daniels, who had been sitting behind driver Patrick O’Connell, 17, was taken to Presence Saint Joseph Medical Center in Joliet, where she was pronounced dead from her injuries. A 15-year-old girl who had been riding next to Daniels also was taken to Saint Joseph but later was airlifted to Loyola Medical Center in Maywood, where she was listed in serious condition.
Meyer said there were no immediate indications drugs or alcohol factored into the crash.
At the crash site Monday, bits of glass remained on the roadway, and investigators had made orange and white markings. Visitors to a makeshift memorial to Elizabeth also could see an armrest, a cell phone case and wrappers from intubation tubes and neck braces used by paramedics.
Standing before a small angel statue, two teddy bears and several bouquets, a woman who said she was Elizabeth’s aunt said it just didn’t seem fair. Elizabeth, her best friend and the other teens were supposed to have gone to the movies, said the woman, who declined to give her last name.
She said Elizabeth was a very outgoing girl who enjoyed being on a dance team and was a big fan of the band One Direction.
Elizabeth had two adult siblings and a 7-year-old sister, and her death has “absolutely devastated” her parents, the woman said.
“What do you say? ‘I’m sorry’ is not good enough,” she said.
Elizabeth’s cousin will be getting married in Philadelphia this weekend, the woman said.
“She’s loved very much and our family’s going to be heartbroken without her,” she said of Elizabeth.
Minooka High School Supt. Jim Colyott said the freshman’s death was a tragic situation and counselors were available for students Monday.
O’Connell and another 15-year-old girl who was sitting in the front passenger seat were treated and released. The Civic driver also was hospitalized, but her condition was not available.
O’Connell was ticketed for disobeying a stop sign, failing to reduce speed to avoid a collision and no insurance.