JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Mother Dena Grossie relived the day she lost her daughter after learning of a similar crash that killed Esther Ohayon. She's now vowing for changes to crosswalk signals.
For Grossie, the story of Ohayon's death is yet another tragic reminder of the dangers of crossing busy intersections. Almost four years ago, Grossie's 6-year-old daughter, Kaitlyn Springer, was killed while crossing San Jose Boulevard less than a mile from where Ohayon died.
"I try to forget, but it doesn't go away," said Grossie.
It was a clear December day in 2009 when Grossie decided to walk to a nearby Kmart for Christmas shopping with her two children.
The trio attempted to cross San Jose Boulevard at Kori Road on their way back home. But instead of pushing the crosswalk signal, Grossie did what many people do, she waited for the light to turn red before crossing -- not knowing that by not pressing the crosswalk button, she'd have less time to get to the other side.
"We were in the middle of the intersection, it turned green, I freaked out and started running faster with my children and it just wasn't enough and we got ran over," said Grossie.
Action News tested the crosswalk signal. When the button is pressed, you have about 45 seconds to cross. But if you don't, you only have about 17 seconds.
According to Grossie, it's a little-known fact that is killing innocent people.
It is still unclear if Ohayon ran into the same problem. According to Ohayon's rabbi, it is likely she did not press the crosswalk button because the accident happened on Yom Kippur, a holiday on which Jews are not allowed to use electronic devices.
By speaking out, Grossie hopes more people will pay attention, but she wants changes to be made, whether it's syncing the crosswalk lights with the traffic lights or coming up with a new system altogether.
It's a change that will also keep Kaitlyn's memory alive.
"Something has to be done. People need to know," said Grossie.