GASTON COUNTY, N.C. — Seven children are without a mother after police said a car hit and killed her Thursday night while she was walking to a store in Gaston County.
The crash happened around 10 p.m. on East Church Street near Ramsey Street in Cherryville.
The driver who hit 38-year-old Kelly Mathis stayed on the scene and cooperated with police. Investigators are still working to determine whether charges should be filed in this case.
Authorities do not believe drugs or alcohol contributed to the crash.
Family members said Kelly Mathis was walking to get food when she was hit by the car. Her father Rocky Mathis described her as a fighter with a tender heart.
He said she was a recovering addict who recently moved back to Cherryville to get her life in order and care for her seven children.
“She had a real tender heart. She would give you whatever she had,” Rocky Mathis said. “She didn’t have much, but what she had, she’d share it with you. It seemed like things were starting to look better for her.”
Family friend John Hicks said he is concerned about Kelly Mathis’ youngest children who are 7, 5 and 8 months old and their father who is left to raise them alone.
“They were just starting to get their crap together. The kids just got in school and Christmas came,” Hicks said. “This is horrible. You gotta find daycare, and you’ve got no money to take care of three kids. What are you gonna do with that?”
No further information has been released.
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