Vigil for Teen Killed in Depew

9:13 AM, Jul 31, 2012   |    comments
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DEPEW, N.Y. - Just after sunrise Monday morning, 18-year-old Ashley Creighton was at a bus stop on Broadway in Depew, waiting to take a bus to the doctor.

By sunset, dozens of her closest friends and family members were gathered nearby to remember her life.  The teenager was killed instantly when a black Toyota SUV swerved across three lanes of traffic and hit her.  It later crashed into Penora's Pizzeria.

Gail Thompson, the woman who says she is Ashley's "guardian mother," still can't fathom just how much has changed in twelve hours.

"It hurts, but it hasn't kicked in yet that she's gone, and away from us," said Thompson through tears Monday evening.

One of Ashley's teachers at Depew High School, Cheryl Haurik, said Ashley, " would want everyone to realize this is another way to show, life is very fragile..... We never know when our time is up here."

The 18-year-old was looking forward to her senior year of school and graduation. Another former teacher remembered her as a good student, who was also caring.

"Very conscientious, very caring about her grades, always wanted to know how she was doing in her subjects," said Susan Hulin, adding there's another thing Ashley always asked her, something that still makes her smile: "She always came to me and asked if I had something to eat. If I have cookies in my drawer, something that she could have. And that's what I'll remember. Always coming to me for that."

When she wasn't at school, she was at work, at McDonalds; where drive-through customers now see a makeshift memorial, put together by employees that remember Ashley as the kind of co-worker that turned making a Big Mac into comedy relief.

"She would always just, like, come up with funny things to say, about how to make sandwiches," said Samantha Tunis, who worked with Ashley.

Those that loved her most now start the process of saying goodbye to the teen that they say truly cared about people.

Police are still investigating the crash, but so far they haven't charged the 35-year-old driver involved in the accident. They say they are looking into whether or not he may have fallen asleep at the wheel.

Ashley's family says they are planning a service for her later this week, and that keeping with her giving spirit, she is an organ donor.













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