Vigil and balloon release honors the life of young mother killed in I-90 crash

Published: Mar. 5, 2023 at 8:31 PM EST
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - A young woman with her entire life ahead of her is remembered as about one-hundred loved ones and friends gather at Garfield Park Reservation on Sunday carrying pink and silver balloons.

22-year-old Samantha Nelson, a mother to two young girls was killed on I-90 eastbound on March 1, when the driver of a 2013 red Bentley was not only speeding, but racing or chasing a red Honda Civic.

The Bentley slammed into the back of the Jeep that Nelson was a passenger in.

The force of the crash was so powerful, the Jeep flipped on to it’s top, and Nelson was thrown from the vehicle.

Police previously said the 58-year-old man driving the Bentley was taken to MetroHealth with multiple injuries.

Police confirmed the Civic not only did not hit either car, but also did not stay at the scene following the deadly crash.

Cleveland police are still looking for the driver of that red Civic, and need the public’s help to identify the person who was behind the wheel last Wednesday.

Nelson’s brother Antonio cried as the large group prayed to give his family strength during this difficult time.

“I love you Sam. I’m crushed. I’m going to miss you so much.”

Nelson’s cousin, Prescious Johnson, believes someone out there knows who caused the deadly crash and she’s counting on them to do the right thing.

“I’m praying if anybody knows something, say something and turn them in” she said. “It is very devastating to see my family in a state like this, and I’m hoping that by the passing of Samantha we can get changes as far as the speed limit and how traffic is circulating around the city.”

As balloons were released by the group to remember a life gone way too soon, the victim’s father and brother embraced the victim’s 3 and 4 year old daughter’s. Two children robbed of a lifetime with their mother.

Cleveland police confirmed the Bentley and a red Honda Civic were racing on I-90 minutes before the 2:02 p.m. crash on March 1.

This is a developing story. Return to 19 News for updates.