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Mother killed in Thruway crash
Farmington, N.Y. - Two days before mother's day, 31-year-old Deborah McDonald was killed and her young daughter was injured in a crash on the thruway.
It happened on I-90 at mile marker 343 in the Town of Farmington, Ontario County around noon Friday.
"I mean this kid impacted lives; she was just an incredible young, vibrant, beautiful woman," Pastor Tony Martorana said the loss has shaken the foundation of Joy Community Church, where McDonald was part of the worship team.
Martorana said she was an amazing singer and just a dynamic person, "So excited about life, there was something about her that was just so incredibly beautiful and she loved her daughter."
McDonald died at the scene; her 6-year-old daughter was taken to Strong Memorial Hospital, treated for minor injuries.
Martorana said it's a miracle the little girl survived--she is expected to be released from the hospital Friday night.
Martorana said, "I mean she was right in the back seat, witnessed everything so at six years old you wonder..."
A trip that ended in tragedy--friends said the mother and daughter were on their way to Delaware to visit family and attend a baby shower.
Martorana said, "She had been putting money in her car for this trip, you know as a single mom just saving money to make this trip--I can't imagine what in the world happened..."
Between the Canandaigua and Manchester exits, State Police investigators said traveling east McDonald's car went off the thruway, crossed the center median and into the westbound lanes where it was struck by a tractor trailer.
"For her to go over the median, I don't if the car failed or if something happened to her--you know, don't know." Martorana said, "She was a one of a kind, she had a glow about her, I mean it's just like it's crazy, it's just crazy, I don't understand what happened."
The driver of the tractor trailer, a 45-year-old Rochester man, was not injured or ticketed.
The State Police are still trying to determine what cause McDonald's car to go off the road--but investigators say it will be difficult to determine what factors contributed or led up to the crash.