Chicago police: Woman killed crossing street in Uptown hit-and-run crash, family speaks out

Relatives told ABC7 that Soyfa Athamanah was a vibrant woman and the glue that held her family together.

ByMark Rivera and Maher Kawash WLS logo
Wednesday, July 26, 2023
Woman killed crossing street in Uptown hit-and-run, family speaks out
Relatives told ABC7 that Soyfa Athamanah was a vibrant woman and the glue that held her family together.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A woman was killed in a hit-and run crash while crossing the street in Uptown Tuesday night, Chicago police said.

The crash occurred at about 10:35 p.m. in the 5100 block of North Broadway, police said.

Police have issued an alert for the driver of a black sedan accused of striking the 69-year-old woman.

The woman was transported to Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where she later died, police said. She has been identified to the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office as Soyfa Athamanah of Chicago.

Athamanah's son said she was just steps from her home when she was hit in the crosswalk and killed by a hit and run driver. Now her family is begging for the person responsible to come forward and bring them the closure they need.

"Please turn yourself in," Pany Thomas, the victim's daughter, said. "Please do it for me. I can forgive you. Let me know what you were thinking. Explain yourself to me, please."

Thomas and her brother, Tony Khounphachan, learned of their 69-year-old mother's death Tuesday night.

Surveillance video shows the vehicle that hit Athamanah pulling away from the scene.

"My mom flew up into the air," Thomas said. "You didn't see that?"

Khounphachan admired the woman who raised him and his two sisters after immigrating to Chicago from Laos.

"Single mom did both jobs, raised me to be a man, loved to cook, always had a smile on her face," Khounphachan said. "My fault is never learning her recipes. now I can't."

Relatives told ABC7 that Athamanah was a vibrant woman who was the glue that held her family together.

"She always put everyone else first," Thomas said.

Flowers now rest at the scene of the crash. One witness said how surprising it was to see the vehicle drive away as Athamanah was left in the road.

"Saw the woman crossing the crosswalk and from what I saw, I didn't see brake lights I saw him swerve, speed up a little bit, she then flew in the air, landed," witness Tyler Lariviere said. "I saw him swerve a little bit more after the impact and it looked like he was going to kind of pull off to the side to like maybe see what is up but he just kept going."

Residents are anxiously hoping police can find the person responsible.

"I'm horrified," resident Kelly Condon said. "We live here and walk around here all the time and the person who hit her didn't seem to care much about anything."

A woman who dropped off flowers didn't want to be identified but she said people speed through this intersection all the time.

"You have to cross very cautiously," she said. "They don't stop. There's signs for pedestrian walk away... they don't stop."

No one has been arrested at this time.


Police describe the vehicle as a black, possibly a Honda, sedan with unknown front end damage and the car was last seen traveling north on North Broadway from West Winona Street.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Chicago Police Major Accident Investigation Unit (312) 745-4521.

Athamanah's son and friends have set up a GoFundMe page for funeral expenses.

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