COWETA COUNTY, Ga. — Five children will grow up without their mother after she was killed Tuesday afternoon in Coweta County while driving to a job interview.
Authorities said the incident began when a rock cracked 43-year-old Juan Marquez’s windshield as he drove on I-85 South.
Marquez thought the rock came from a tractor-trailer driving in front of him. So, he stopped his vehicle partially on the interstate to confront the truck driver.
The Georgia State Patrol said the tractor-trailer stopped as well, but 32-year-old Jessica Jose, of Grantville, slammed into the back of the tractor-trailer.
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Channel 2 Action News spoke with Jose's 12-year-old daughter with permission from her aunt and grandmother.
"I started crying. I didn't believe it actually happened," said Jose's daughter, Carmen.
Carmen said she's heartbroken over the loss of her mother.
"She was my best friend and she was the only person I had to lean on because I didn't have a dad to be there for me," Carmen said.
Marquez is facing several charges, including first-degree vehicular homicide. He’s being held in the Coweta County Jail without bail.
"No one can ever replace my mom. She was everything to me," Carmen said.
A GoFundMe account has been set up to raise money for Jose's children. CLICK HERE for more information.
"I can't stress enough what a beautiful, determined and dedicated mother and person Jessi was," the GoFundMe account wrote.
Michelle Bennett said she's grieving for her daughter, but also making plans to relocate to Coweta County to raise her five grandchildren.
"All I know is I'm going to be here for them. I'm going to keep them together. They're going to stay together," she said.