Illinois State Police officers reconstruct the accident scene at 20th and College in Alton on Thursday morning.

A tragic accident claimed the life of a devoted mother and Alton Hit and Run employee early Thursday morning at 20th and College Avenue in Alton.

Stephanie Carrington, 31, of Alton, was on her way to work for a 5 a.m. shift at the Hit and Run on State Street in Alton when the accident happened, her mother, Kim, said at the scene.

The  Madison County Coroner's office said Stephanie Carrington was the driver and sole occupant of a 2005 Ford Explorer that was traveling westbound that was struck by a semi tractor-trailer owned by Con-way Freight at the intersection of Martin Luther King Drive at 20th Street in Alton.  She was pronounced dead at the scene at 5:28 a.m. by Madison County Coroner’s Investigator Kelsey Wofford.  The incident was first reported to authorities at 4:38 a.m.

The coroner's office concluded Stephanie Carrington died as a result of head injuries.  The crash also remains under investigation by the Alton Police Department with the assistance of the Illinois State Police.  

Hit and Run Operations Manager Teresa Fowler said she, her workers and customers are devastated by the accident that claimed Stephanie’s life.

“Everybody loved her here,” she said. “She just had her birthday last week and she had two beautiful girls. She was a hard worker. She was always concerned about her kids and raising them. She was very family oriented and her girls were her life.”

Illinois State Police and Alton Police were at the scene working the accident. The ISP reconstruction team was on hand surveying what had happened.

Stephanie had recently learned she was going to be promoted to an assistant manager position and was on her way for the 5 a.m. shift early because of that, Fowler said. Stephanie had worked for Hit and Run since 2004 and was a valued employee, the operations manager said.

Today is Fowler’s birthday. She said she will never forget how today turned from such a wonderful day to tragedy with a blink of an eye.

“It was just a happy day starting out,” Fowler said. “She was to start training for her new position on Monday and was so happy and excited about that.”

Funeral services remain pending at this time but are under the direction of Elias, Kallal, and Schaaf Funeral Home of Alton, Illinois.

Fowler said Stephanie’s life was really coming together and it looked like the future was bright for her and her children.

“She was just a great person,” Fowler said. “I can’t say enough about her. She is a year older than my daughter. She was always happy and smiling. All the customers just loved her.”

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