Autumn is upon us in the Midwest. So it’s natural for Illinois residents to try to cram as many summertime activities as possible into their schedule before the weather turns colder. That often means more pedestrians moving around on the streets. Unfortunately, there has been a rash of fatal auto-pedestrian accidents in Cook County over the past several days.
On September 15, a young cross country runner lost his life when he was struck by a car in Frankfort. The 14-year old boy was jogging on a horse trail in the Van Horne Woods Forest Preserve when he was hit, and he succumbed to his injuries later that evening. The driver was cited for traffic violations. A candlelight vigil was held for the teen Sunday night at his high school.
Two days later, a pair of elderly women were victimized by a hit-and-run driver in the Jefferson Park area of Chicago about a quarter mile away from the Kennedy Expressway. The women were crossing Lawrence Avenue near the intersection of Major Avenue when a dark-colored pickup truck struck them both and then fled the scene. One of the victims is in critical condition at Lutheran General Hospital; but the other, an 82-year old woman, died at the scene. The two ladies had gone to breakfast and the hair salon that morning to celebrate the deceased victim’s 82nd birthday. Police are still searching for the driver for the Ford F-150 which was hauling a ladder at the time of the crash.
And on Monday morning, a man was fatally injured in a hit-and-run accident in Chicago’s Gresham neighborhood. The victim was trying to cross South Racine Avenue near Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Park when he was struck by what police believe was a dark-colored Oldsmobile Alero. The driver fled the scene and remains at large, while the victim was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital an hour later. The victim lived across the street from the park.
From the information given in all of these cases, it appears that the family members of the deceased victims all have solid grounds for wrongful death lawsuits against the offending drivers. However, the two hit-and-run drivers in Chicago will have to be located and identified before such suits can be filed.