The Munroe Falls mother of an Akron man killed in an accident last week said Tuesday that her son was a sweet person and she wants people to know he was not the cause of the crash.
Tyler Williams, 22, died on the eve of Thanksgiving a half-hour before the holiday.
A woman driving the wrong way on state Route 8 struck Williams’ car in the southbound lane of the highway north of Second Street.
Sherry Williams said some initial media reports blamed her son for the accident.
Witnesses erroneously told Beacon Journal partner News 5 Cleveland that the driver of the car heading the wrong way was killed in the crash.
Those inaccurate reports added to the grief she and the family are confronting, she said.
"It’s bad enough knowing we don’t have him, but to know that they’re placing wrong stories about him is devastating," Sherry Williams said.
Police arrived at the Williamses’ home about 6 a.m. Thanksgiving Day to alert them that their son had been in an accident. The Williamses were told to call the Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office.
"[The police] haven’t told us anything," Sherry Williams said. "They know it was her and [her] car that was driving the wrong way."
Police have been unable to talk with the 40-year-old woman who was seriously injured and remains in a hospital, Falls Police Chief Jack Davis said on Tuesday.
"This is an ongoing investigation," Davis said, noting the woman has not been charged. "We don’t know why she was going the wrong way."
The Summit Metro Crash Team was still piecing together what happened last week when a news release was issued about the crash.
The news release did not specify how the accident occurred or which driver was responsible.
A traffic crash report released Tuesday said that the woman, who lives in Cuyahoga Falls, was heading northbound in a Saturn Aura in a southbound lane on state Route 8 when she struck a semi tractor-trailer and then hit Williams’ car. Williams was driving a Nissan Altima.
The driver of the semi tractor-trailer told police he was in the middle lane when he saw the headlights of the wrong-way car approaching on the right and starting to come into his lane. He said he collided with the car as he was trying to get into the left lane.
A witness said she saw an explosion as the two cars crashed, and then a car flipped over. The witness said she stopped her car and found a woman inside the car that had flipped over. She said the woman "was not able to provide any information."
Cuyahoga Falls police said the woman had to be extricated from the car by the city fire department, and was transported to a hospital with serious injuries.
The accident was reported shortly before 11:30 p.m. last Wednesday.
An obituary for Williams said he was born in Cuyahoga Falls and was a graduate of Stow-Munroe Falls High School. He worked at Lammlein Construction.
Sherry Williams said her son’s death has been especially hard for his 11-year-old nephew.
Her son was at a friend’s house before the accident, his mother said.
"He was just trying to come home."