Burlington City, NJ (WTXF) - A Burlington City mother is grieving the loss of her daughter.
"I'm tying to be so strong. I am," said Ina White. She’s still in shock over the loss of her 23-year-old daughter Stephanie. The two were inseparable.
"She was like my best friend," she said. Ina says her daughter loved fashion and was a hard worker.
"She had a beautiful heart. She had a good heart."
But last Sunday Stephanie lost her life in the icy Delaware River when the car she was riding in with her boyfriend went off Riverbank Road near Wood Street in Burlington City. Investigator say 24-year-old Jacob Garrett was driving at a high rate of speed when he hit a parked mini-van before crashing through the river wall. He managed to get out of the car and took off running while yelling to witnesses to help his girlfriend.
"I’m extremely hurt and confused. I don't understand," said Ina. Police say Garrett got on a train at the Burlington Towne Center North light rail but was captured at another stop after K9 tracked him.
"My whole body just got numb and I think I'm still pretty numb from it," said Ina. She says her daughter and Garrett had been dating for a year and she thought of him as her son.
"Minutes away from where she lives at, in the freezing cold water and you just left her there," she said. The river where her daughter died is across the street from where they live.
"It's rough. It's kind of hard to come home," she said. Roselle White is Stephanie's aunt.
"We put 100% faith in the department. We're glad they were able to catch him right away," she said. Still Ina says closure is a long way off.
"I can't call for her. I can't sit with her, watch a movie with her or have those laughs," said Ina.
The family is asking for help burying Stephanie which has to be done by next week. They’ve set up a GoFundMe page for anyone who can help this grieving mother lay her daughter to rest.