SPRINGFIELD TOWNSHIP | A 39-year-old woman and her 7-year-old son were killed Saturday morning when the car in which they were riding struck a tree.
Shay Hedden and her son, Matthew, were both pronounced dead at the scene of the crash, which occurred just after 11:30 a.m. at 5121 N. County Road 600 West, according to LaPorte County Coroner John Sullivan.
The Heddens lived at 5464 N. County Road 600 West, just outside the Michigan City city limits.
According to LaPorte County Sheriff's Department, Shay Hedden was driving a 1993 Toyota Corolla south when she attempted to pass another vehicle. For some reason, she lost control of her vehicle and the car went off the road and struck a tree.
Sullivan said both the mother and son were pinned in the vehicle and had to be extricated. Both were wearing seat belts. Both died of blunt force trauma.
"It was one of the most violent accidents I've ever seen in my 20 years as coroner," said Sullivan, adding it was the fourth fatal accident in LaPorte County in about two weeks.
Authorities continue to investigate.