Chicago (CBS) The Independent: – A crowd of people succumbed to unimaginable grief at a memorial service and balloon launch in the far northwest of the city on Monday evening.
Relatives and friends gathered together to remember five members of one family who were killed in a horrific car accident over the weekend. The family’s father was still in the hospital fighting for his life on Monday night.
From cheerleading and football, Oriole Park has truly been the second home for families. On a Monday night, those who knew and loved the family felt that coming to the park was the only thing that felt right.
Lauren DuBose was a dedicated cheerleading coach in the park, at 5500 N. Olcott Ave. , while her husband, Tom, was helping out with soccer. Their four children were active members of the Falcon Sports Program for Youth.
“Lauren and Tom have never been busy,” said younger brother Lauren.
Lauren’s brother spoke to a large group of family and friends who had gathered to release the balloon and celebrate life.
“As soon as I set foot in this garden,” he said, “I saw every one of you here, and he collapsed even more.”
“They had the greatest children – the most beautiful children ever,” family friend Cindy Cisneros added. “What happened to them is unimaginable.”
Lauren and all her children – 13-year-old Emma, 8-year-old Lucas, 7-year-old Nikki, and 5-year-old Ella – along with a friend identified as 13-year-old Catriona Koziara, known IN CAT – He died in a fiery crash Sunday night at Jane Adams Memorial Tollway in rural McHenry County.
The truck driver they were in hit head-on in the wrong direction. And that driver – 22-year-old Jennifer Fernandez of Carpentersville – also died.
Thomas is the only survivor.
“Breaking, deserted. Alone,” said Nelissa Zinino’s friend.
“I wish she was still here,” said her friend Gianna Quinones.
Kat’s friends also attended the memorial on Monday. They remember her as a great dancer and best friend.
She was worth much more, said Natalia Linkevich.
Tom Dubos was flown to Loyola University Medical Center in May with serious injuries. Stayed there on a Monday night.
We were told that the family and Kat were on their way from vacation in Minnesota at the time of the accident.
The Rolling Meadows Hope Fund is also accepting donations for families of victims at this GoFundMe.