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March 28, 2010

Mourners honor teen cyclist

Filed under: Illinois — Tags: , — Roger @ 5:22 pm

A Chicago teenager who was killed Wednesday when  she and two friends were struck by a minivan in Southern Illinois was laid to rest Sunday.

Plenty of media outlets in the Chicago area covered Faith Dremmer’s funeral service earlier today, including WLS-TV, WGN-TV, the Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Breaking News, a service of the Chicago Tribune and other media outlets.

“There were no irresponsible parties here. There was no inexperience (among the cyclists). There was nothing left to chance in the preparation that was made,” Rabbi Aaron Petuchowski said during the eulogy at Temple Sholom in Chicago. “We grieve for what might have been, for joys unrealized, for tasks undone, for challenges unmet.”

Faith’s friends, Julia Baird and Kaia Tammen, remain hospitalized in Evansville, Ind., after suffering major injuries.

The driver of the minivan that struck the girls, 86-year-old John Hillyard of Enfield, Ill., was given a ticket for improper lane usage. Illinois  State Police Sgt. Mark Zimmerman told Chicago Breaking News on Saturday that  Hillyard would not face criminal charges.

Hillyard told state police he may have fallen asleep at the wheel before the crash occurred but said he wasn’t absolutely certain if that was the case, Chicago Breaking News reported. Hillyard has a valid driver’s license and had a clean public driving record before Wednesday’s crash, said Dave Drucker, a spokesman for the Illinois secretary of state’s office.

The accident took place at the intersection of Shawneetown-New Haven Road and Ponds Church Road north of Shawneetown. The girls were on a spring break bicycle trip that began last Monday in Cape Girardeau, Mo., continued through Shawnee National Forest and other scenic roads in Southern Illinois and was expected to end in Indiana.

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