2 women die after car hits tree in Crete

March 23, 2011 5:53:44 AM PDT
A man has been cited with driving under the influence of cannabis in a crash that killed two women in south suburban Crete.

Relatives say Cheyenne Cardosi, 21, and her friend Sarah Shephard, 21, were headed to Cardosi's grandparents' home in Cedar Lake, Indiana Sunday when the car they were riding in crashed into a tree. Cardosi's live-in boyfriend, 23-year-old Velar Mayfield of University Park, was driving the vehicle.

Officers went to the 3000 block of East Bemes Road where witnesses told them Mayfield lost control of his car and struck a tree.

Both women died from their injuries, while Mayfield was transported to an area hospital where he is listed in good condition. Mayfield was subsequently cited for driving under the influence of cannabis.

"The matter is under further review. There is further investigation to be conducted at this time to see if there is any opportunity here that these charges might be upgraded to an aggravated DUI. But it's premature at this time," said Deputy Chief Ken Kaupas, Will County sheriff spokesperson.

A rush of emotions enveloped Derrick Cardosi as he talked about his sister Cheyenne just a day after the 21-year-old and her friend died in the accident.

"Can't believe it happened. There's no way that it should have happened," Cardosi told ABC7. "She helped raised me, so it's hard right now."

Cheyenne Cardosi was studying to be a medical technician and had reunited with her brother after a family tragedy separated them when he was seven. Both were eventually adopted by their grandparents.

On Monday afternoon, Derrick Cardosi read words of condolence posted to his sister's Facebook page. He and others remember her as a kind person who enjoyed life.

"I'm happy right now that she's not going to be in any more pain, but I would give my heart and soul to tell her I love her one last time," said Cardosi.

Funeral arrangements are still pending for both victims. Meanwhile, investigators are trying to figure out if they were wearing seatbelts at the time of the crash and whether road conditions and weather played a role in the fatal accident.