‘Beautiful gift of life’: Father meets newborn after his pregnant wife is killed in car crash

A man said his pregnant wife left behind a “beautiful gift of life” before she died from injuries sustained in a car accident — their newborn son.

Brandon Russell’s son was born prematurely after his wife, Samantha Russell, was fatally injured on Tuesday when a man fleeing from Wichita police ran a red light and slammed into her car, the Wichita Eagle reported.

Samantha was in the left turn lane around 5 p.m. when the vehicle collided with hers and two others, according to Kansas Highway Patrol.

The fleeing driver is in custody and could face a murder charge, Wichita Police told the Eagle. 

USA TODAY has reached out to the Wichita Police Department for comment. 

Samantha was 33 weeks pregnant and her child was delivered immediately after the crash, the Eagle reported. 

Brandon wrote in a Facebook post that Samantha, 22, had died from her injuries but was going to be a fantastic mother.

“Words cannot explain or express the emotions going through everyone’s head today,” Brandon said. “Sammy was taken from us but left behind the most beautiful gift of life.”

Brandon said Samantha always knew what to say when he needed advice, had a bubbly attitude and was the best example of what it looked like to be happy. 

“She was an all-around good person who did not deserve to die on impact from a reckless driver,” he wrote. “She showed happiness to everyone and anyone that she knew.”

He told the Eagle that their newborn son, Mac, was healthy and is expected to pull through, despite remaining in the hospital.

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A GoFundMe account created to support her family following her death has raised more than $43,000 of the $5,000 goal. 

“I want anyone reading this to take a moment to cherish and love those special people around you while they are here that no one could ever replace because they mean so much to you,” Brandon wrote in his post. “You never know what to expect every day. Live every day to your fullest.”

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Follow reporter Asha Gilbert @Coastalasha. Email: agilbert@usatoday.com.

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