A Birmingham family is in mourning Monday after a mother and her toddler son were killed in a vehicle accident that left their truck hanging over the side of a bridge.
"Looking at those images. Frightful just to see that truck hanging over that bridge like that," Jeannie Jackson Smith said.
Smith is still sorting through the emotions these images stir up knowing this is how her niece Kayla Jackson and Kayla's three-year-old son Zion spent some of their last moments. The accident happened Sunday on Jefferson Avenue Southwest. The impact was so great that part of the bridge was damaged.
"Just seeing that and what she may have endured before the impact," Smith said.
Smith is trying to recall good memories of the mother and son to dull the pain.
"One of the things I remember was her laugh. She had a way of laughing that would wake up the whole house," Smith said. "We could sit down and talk about anything sometimes."
Kayla's sister Louvenia also remembers her nephew as an adorable but challenging little boy.
"He's so wonderful but so bad! He's one of those boys where you say, 'He's so cute!' but when you really get him that boy terrorizes your whole house," Louvenia said.
Like Smith, Louvenia has seen the images of the accident that took her sister and nephew's lives. Along with sadness those images also stir up a feeling of gratitude for church-goers who tried to help save her sister and nephew before emergency crews got there.
"I saw when it started hanging off the guardrail and I just started helping," John Hall said.
"I wish I could find each and every one of them and hug them for that," Smith said.
"I would like to tell them thank you for trying because there's really nothing else they could do the way that truck was hanging off the bridge. I wish I could have one more time to hug them and kiss them," Louvania said.
Sadly, Kayla's family say that since the accident someone broke into her apartment and stole several expensive electronics. They have since moved her belongins from the apartment.
The third passenger in the truck, Kayla's fiance and Zion's father, survived. The family says he has been released from the hospital.
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