Jenny Gaston had just left work and was walking to a nearby bus stop when a black SUV hit her and took off at around 5:30 p.m. Police found Gaston's body in the middle of Sheridan Road.
She was taken to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville, where she was pronounced dead, police said.
Gaston's mother, Sue Blanton, was waiting for her bus to pull up that night.
"I knew she was supposed to be home," Blanton said.
Gaston's mother said she knew something was wrong.
"You do not want to believe it. You do not want to go to sleep at night. You do not want to wake up in the morning. The first thing I think of is my daughter laying in the street," Blanton said.
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Waukegan police are now looking for the black GM SUV, which they said has heavy front-end damage.
Investigators said there were no witnesses. Despite it being a busy crossing near both a restaurant and a gas station, there does not appear to be any surveillance footage of the hit-and-run crash.
Debris left behind by the vehicle is one of the few things detectives have to go on at this point.
Investigators said they're confident that they'll find the driver.
"Turn yourself in. When they probably wont, they will have to be tracked down and we will have to sit here and wait and hope for a call, but that wont bring Jenny back," Blanton said. "I'll still have to live without my daughter now."
The 46-year-old is remembered as always being there for others.
When a friend fell on tough times and needed help with her baby, Gaston adopted him and raised him as her own.
Six years later, that little boy is left behind as a family tries to come to terms with a loss too great to put into words.