Family mourns mother struck and killed in South Philadelphia

- In South Philadelphia, a family is in mourning over the mother hit and killed by an out of control car, sacrificing her own life to save her daughter.

“She’s my hero. A hard working woman would do anything for anybody, especially her grandson,” said daughter Melissa Flocco.

The last and ultimate sacrifice 46-year-old Maria Jacovelli would make for her family came as she was wrapping up shopping for her two-year-old grandson’s birthday party.

When she and daughter Melissa were crossing to grab an Uber, they came into the path of an out of control mini-van barreling through the intersection of 23rd and Passyunk. 

“I saw the car coming up. It was smoking already because it had hit other cars,” Flocco said.

“She pushed my niece out of the way. She got hit herself to save her daughter,” said sister Frances Pellac. 

“I fell and looked up didn’t see my mom. She was on the ground,” Melissa said.

“I’m trying to figure it out, what’s going on,” Joseph Jacovelli, Maria’s brother said.

Police believe the 38-year-old driver of the mini-van may have suffered a medical emergency as he drove up to 70 miles an hour, slamming into cars and injuring people. They’re awaiting toxicology test results.

“My mind is spinning. There’s nothing you can do, at that point. So, it’s like what can you do, right?” asked John Degori, Maria’s son.

They want to honor her, but they need help, as they cannot afford final arrangements for Maria. A Go Fund Me page has been set up for help with arrangements. To help the family, visit In Loving Memory of Maria Jacovelli. 

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