Roadside marker honors teen

GILBERTS, Ill. Caitlin Weese was killed on May 22, 2003 along Route 72 in Gilberts. Wednesday morning, a memorial marker was unveiled at the site of the fatal accident in her honor. The sign bears her name and the date she was killed by a drunk driver.

Weese's marker is the first in the state under Tina's law, a roadside memorial marker program. The program, which was named after Tina Ball -- the construction worker who was killed on I-57 by a drunk driver in 2003, went into effect earlier this year. The law enables signs to be placed on state highway crash sites to honor those killed.

Caitlin's stepfather, who has fought for this legislation, says the marker honors a young woman who was very independent and had talked to them shortly before her death about wanting to pay her own way to help her family.

"So it's kind of ironic that shortly after that, when she really, truly needed a safety net, we couldn't be there for her. There was nothing anybody could have done after the crash. Just the injuries that she suffered, there was nothing that could have changed the outcome," said Joel Maines, victim's stepfather.

Since Tina's law went into effect, there are 25 applications for similar markers. They have been filed with I-DOT. The cost is $150.

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