Crime Watch 8

Vigils honor, remember 3 teens killed after 3-car, hit-and-run crash

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Three young lives taken too soon.

On Monday morning, more than 100 people came to The Purpose of Life Ministries Church to honor and remember three teenagers who were killed while walking over the weekend. The church is a few steps from where the hit-and-run happened early Saturday morning on West Kessler Boulevard North Drive.

Another vigil to remember the teens was scheduled for Monday afternoon at Woods at Oak Crossing apartments.

The hit-and-run happened early Saturday morning on West Kessler Boulevard North Drive in Indianapolis.

“It’s the worst pain, y’all,” said Lashana Martin, Tyjiana Valez’s mother. “I don’t wish this pain on nobody.”

Tyjiana Valez was just 13-years-old and excited to start at Lincoln Middle School in the fall, her mother told News 8.

Martin said, “She was the life of the party. Everybody loved her. She was funny.”

Kashonna Brown, Kierra Brown’s mother, said, “I would’ve never thought in a million years that my baby would be taken away from me. This is a nightmare, and I can’t wake up.”

Kierra Brown’s mother told News 8 that Kierra was just 15 years old and ready to be a Ben Davis High School sophomore .

“She was very goofy. Sweet,” Brown said about her daughter. “Social butterfly. Happy-go-lucky.”

The Marion County Coroner’s Office nor the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department by Monday afternoon had formally identified the teens who died in the hit-and-run.

The two girls, along with a third teenager, were walking on West Kessler Boulevard North Drive near West 38th Street around 1:20 a.m. Saturday. IMPD said investigators learned two vehicles traveling southbound collided and lost control just after crossing over 38th Street. One vehicle went across the median and struck another vehicle. The other vehicle went off the road to the right and struck the teens who were walking southbound.

“I had to pull up on the scene and see my baby laying there with a white sheet on her,” Martin said. “I never thought in a million years I’d see that.”

In the morning vigil, guests released balloons into the sky to honor and remember each of the young lives taken.

“That’s what keeps me going, seeing everybody, seeing that she was loved,” Martin said.

“This is beautiful,” Brown said. “This is so beautiful. I thank everybody out here.”

Brown had a tearful plea for sidewalks and more safety on the street where the teens were killed.

“These people are drag racing up and down these streets and they took these babies lives,” Brown said.

As three families are forced to continue on without their 3 teenage children, Lashana Martin said something that resonated with the crowd: “We will have to get through this together.”


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