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Girl dead, mother severely burned, in weekend wreck

"I just want my wife." That's the plea from a man who may feel he has little else left at the moment. His wife is fighting for her life with burns over most of her body and his 9-year-old daughter is dead after a senseless weekend car accident. The crash did not happen in Maryland, but the magnitude of the loss, and the details of how it happened, are such that it merits attention.

According to reports, the fiery wreck took place Saturday morning. The 27-year-old woman and her daughter were driving along on the freeway. Witnesses say their car was sideswiped by a larger SUV. They say the woman appeared to swerve a bit and then lost control of the car. She smashed into the center median and the car caromed back across three lanes before flipping and catching fire.

Authorities say the fire spread rapidly through the overturned vehicle. Both of the victims were strapped in by seat belts. Eyewitness reports say the woman eventually managed to crawl out of the wreck, engulfed in flames. The child didn't get free and died at the scene.

Bystanders managed to smother the flames on the mother's body. But officials say she suffered second and third degree burns over 80 to 90 percent of her body. The official word is that she is expected to survive, but at what cost?

The California Highway Patrol is investigating the crash and says it is looking for the hit-and-run SUV. The public's help is welcomed.

The husband of the burn victim remains stoic and hopeful in the face of the horror. He says watch for a miracle. One other sad note: the burned woman is an aspiring singer-songwriter with prospects for a bright career. How will this accident affect her future?

Source: LA Weekly, "Gilani Taylor, Aspiring L.A. Singer, Loses Daughter, Burns 80% of Body in Fiery Crash on 101 Freeway; Hit-and-Run Driver Sought," Simone Wilson, Oct. 4, 2011

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