U of I truck accident in Urbana kills Chicago woman, 20

As the University of Illinois mourns a student killed when a truck jumped a curb and struck her on an Urbana sidewalk, the driver says he had diabetic reaction.
October 10, 2013 3:37:03 PM PDT
As the University of Illinois mourns a student killed when a truck jumped a curb and struck her on an Urbana sidewalk, the driver says he had diabetic reaction.

Urbana police are investigating the crash that killed Mimi Liu, 20. Liu, a student at Merit School of Music, is remembered as a gifted pianist.

"She was a wonderful girl. And an absolute joy of a student for us here," Timothy Riordan, Merit School of Music, said.

Two U of I students were struck by the car. The other student, Spandana Mantravadi, survived. Her injuries aren't considered life threatening, but she remains hospitalized.

"It's just an awful situation. I feel so bad for those girls. They were just walking, like me and now one of them is dead. I feel bad for their families," Brittany Cline, U of I student, said.

Liu was an intern for the Chinese Fine Arts Society and had received awards from the organization for her performances.

"She went to college, and then, 'Do you need any help? Can I volunteer?' Which is incredible," Julie Taio Ma, Chinese Fine Arts Society, said.

Urbana police cited 58-year-old Willie Craft Sr. for driving without insurance and improper lane usage.

Liu is the second university student to die in the past two weeks.

Mengchen Huang was stabbed to death in her Urbana apartment on Sept. 27. A former boyfriend is charged with murder in her death.

"Very sad couple of weeks here," Kaler said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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