(WMC-TV) - Many in Ripley, Tennessee are mourning the loss of a beloved mother of three, as well as a 22-year-old man. They were two of four people killed in a tragic accident on Interstate 40 in Henderson County Tuesday night.
As a crowd gathered outside Mary Whitelow's Ripley home, inside, she couldn't hold back the tears.
"She was just a bundle of joy," Mary Whitelow said about her daughter, Deborah, 41.
Deborah Whitelow, nicknamed Dell, was driving on I-40 when a tractor-trailer heading eastbound hit a cow standing in the road. The driver ended up in the westbound lane, hitting two other cars.
Whitelow and 22-year-old Trarell Robinson were killed instantly, along with two other men, one from North Carolina and the other from Virginia.
Both Whitelow and Robinson lived in Ripley.
Family members say Whitelow had just dropped her son off at rehab near Nashville.
"If I live to see another 62 years, I'll never understand. I thought I'd be the one to leave her but it didn't happen that way. She left me," said Mary, who depended on her daughter to care for her as she is on oxygen and in her bedroom most of the time. "When she'd go to work, she'd call me when she got there. She'd say 'I'm going to work mama, I'll see you this evening.' I'd say, 'OK.' She ain't gonna be able to do that no more."
In addition to her mother, Dell leaves behind three sons, her brother, and her sister.
No charges were filed in this accident.
Funeral arrangements for Deborah Whitelow and Trarell Robinson are pending.
Meanwhile, 22-year-old Ripley resident Avery Blue, who was also inside the car with Dell and Trarell, is still in ICU at Jackson-Madison County Hospital.
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730 North Summit Street