Four killed, including Schaumburg teen and 6-year-old boy, in Route 53 crash

 
Updated 2/21/2021 7:45 PM

Four people are dead, including a Schaumburg teen and a 6-year-old boy from Chicago, after a Jeep slammed into the rear of a car parked along the shoulder on Route 53 in Rolling Meadows late Saturday.

Illinois State Police said the four people killed were sitting in a 2019 Ford Fiesta parked on the right northbound shoulder of Route 53 near Kirchoff Road. The 2018 Jeep traveling north veered off the road and struck the car at about 11:33 p.m., police said.

 

The impact sent the vehicles across all lanes of traffic, with both coming to rest on the left shoulder, according to state police.

Along with the young victims, the driver of the Fiesta, Stacy S. Harris, 45, of Schaumburg, and passenger Herlanda L. Harris, 47, of Chicago, were killed, state police said. Stacy and Herlanda Harris were sisters, family members said.

Family identified the 6-year old as Herlanda Harris' son, Jimarion Harris, and the teen as Stacy Harris' son, Jeremy Johnson.

"They were very giving people. They were about family. They tried to help others," said the Harris sisters' aunt, Willie May Harris-Hill.

The driver of the Jeep, Lamar M. Graves, 32, of Bellwood, was taken to an area hospital with nonlife-threatening injuries.

The crash remains under investigation by state police and charges have not been filed at this time.

Stacy's son, Jason Harris, said his mother provided health care for elderly people who were sick and at home.

"She was a good mom," he said.

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Harris-Hill said Herlanda Harris worked out of her home as a hairstylist, often providing service without charge.

She said the group was on the way to Stacy's home, where Herlanda planned to spend the night, when the crash occurred.

Jason Harris, who lives in Evanston, said he last spoke with his mom at about 8 p.m. Saturday.

"Everything seemed fine," he said.

Palatine Schaumburg High School District 211 spokesman Tom Petersen confirmed Sunday that Jeremy Johnson attended the district's Higgins Education Center.

"Our thoughts and sympathies are with the student's family at this difficult time," Petersen said in a written statement, "Members of the school's crisis team will be available to meet with students and staff members beginning tomorrow, Feb. 22, 2021, in-person, by phone, or virtually through Zoom."

Funeral arrangements are pending, family members said. An online fundraiser to help the family with funeral costs has been established at www.gofundme.com/f/gajff-harris-family-memorial-fund?qid=b20ad5da07a2501155641fd2d3ec49a4.

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