‘Our life was just ripped apart:’ Family of Orange County hit-and-run crash victim seeking answers

Fatal crash reported on John Young Parkway near Hunter’s Creek Boulevard

A family is pleading for results after their mother and her dog were killed in a hit-and-run crash at a busy intersection in June.

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – A family is pleading for results after their mother and her dog were killed in a hit-and-run crash at a busy intersection in June.

Florida Highway Patrol said the 78-year-old woman and her dog were killed along John Young Parkway near Hunter’s Creek Boulevard in Orange County on June 4.

Tara Stiner identified the victims as her mother, Gail Kelley, and her mother’s dog, Tucker.

“Our life was just ripped apart,” Stiner said.

Stiner said it’s been five weeks and she still has questions about her mother’s death. She remembers the day of the crash.

“I turned on the news and that’s when I saw it. I saw a report of an elderly woman with her dog hit on John Young and I knew it was her,” she said.

Stiner said her mother walked her dog every day. Stiner said troopers told her Kelley was crossing on a green light.

“I just can’t find in my heart that she would have ever done this and crossed on a green light. It had to be that dog got spooked by something, she was trying to get out of the traffic. She would have done anything for him,” Stiner said.

Stiner said her mother got the six-month-old puppy to keep her company after her husband of 59 years died in November from pancreatic cancer. Stiner said her mother moved to the area three weeks before the crash to be closer to family.

“Family was her thing. She had an incredible relationship with both of my children,” Stiner said.

FHP said Stiner’s death is one of 12 fatal hit-and-run crashes in Orange County so far this year, which is nearly 20% of all fatal hit-and-run crashes in the state.

“I just don’t understand how somebody could do that. I don’t understand how somebody could just take off,” Stiner said.

Troopers said they only received one Crimeline tip in this case that didn’t pan out. FHP released surveillance video after the crash, hoping it would drum up leads.

But Stiner said she still doesn’t have any answers. She hopes someone can help her family get results.

“Somebody has got to be out there that knows about this and I think that’s my most frustrating thing because how do you sleep at night? How do you go about your day every single day and know the pain that you’ve caused somebody?” Stiner said.

Anyone with information is asked to call FHP at 407-737-2213 or Crimeline.


About the Author:

Amanda Castro, a proud UCF alum, joined the News 6 team in November 2015 and was promoted to weekend morning anchor in April 2016. Go Knights!