“She has lost both limbs below her waist, so for us, how do you find words to explain our sorrow?" a volleyball club official said.
A gifted teenage athlete was hit by a car while visiting St. Louis for a volleyball tournament, resulting in both her legs having to be amputated. The 16-year-old girl was critically injured on February 18 when a 2023 Audi Q5 allegedly ran through a yield sign at 11th and St. Charles, according to a statement from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, reported PEOPLE.
We are learning more about a 16-year-old who was struck and critically injured by a car while she was walking in downtown St. Louis Saturday night.— Mercedes Mackay (@MercedesMackay_) February 20, 2023
Her name is Janae Edmondson from Tennessee and was in St. Louis for a volleyball tournament when the incident happened. @ksdknews pic.twitter.com/evjZJ4oLSI
The Mid-TN Volleyball Club identified the teen victim as Janae Edmondson of Smyrna, Tennessee. She was walking back to her St. Louis hotel with her family on February 18 night when she was hit by the car and critically injured, according to Jeff Wismer, the assistant director at Middle Tennessee Volleyball Club. Edmondson played for their '18 Blue' team and had just committed to playing volleyball in college, reported KKTV.
Sad news for @smyrnaathletics as multi-sport standout Janae Edmondson critically injured in accident in St. Louis over the weekend. https://t.co/GMpfzkrV8W— Cecil Joyce (@cecil_joyce) February 21, 2023
Tough to write these kind of stories. Keep Janae, her family and Smyrna High in your thoughts. @niittanyfan @ldrayton5
Wismer added that Edmondson had to have both legs amputated after the crash, according to CBS affiliate KMOV. “A wonderful kid with a great smile, a three-sport athlete,” Wismer said. “She has lost both limbs below her waist, so for us, how do you find words to explain our sorrow? We really can’t,” he added.
"Her life has changed, and we are going to need people to love her and support her and support that family as they evolve and we are just so thankful that she's with us," he told the outlet.
Janae Edmondson was in a crosswalk with her parents on her way home from a volleyball tournament when police allege Daniel Riley ignored and sped through a yield sign, striking her and another car. (Town of Smyrna, St. Louis Police Department) pic.twitter.com/rcPBSY1rDF— George Leiter (@LeiterGeorge) February 21, 2023
Edmondson was hit by the car around 8:40 p.m. on February 18. According to St. Louis Police, the gray Audi ran a yield sign at the intersection and hit a Chevy Malibu. The Malibu went airborne and hit Edmondson, pinning her between it and a parked car, as per KKTV.
"We have frustration. We have anger over any responsible act, a missed sign, or whatever was a causation of this,” Wismer said. He further described Edmondson as a teen with so much promise ahead of her.
Parents of volleyball player who lost legs in crash speak at suspect's detention hearing Janae Edmondson's parents, who witnessed the crash, gave an emotional testimony in court on Tuesday. https://t.co/FbNmaBk312— Christine Byers (@ChristineDByers) February 21, 2023
“The road in front of Janae is tough. There’s going to be a lot of challenges ahead, financial challenges, emotional challenges,” Wismer said. “We’re hoping that our community can embrace this family as she goes through this unique time in her life that you can never imagine. This is an unthinkable situation that she has to encounter right now,” he added.
A GoFundMe account has been created to help her family with medical expenses. More than $75,000 has already been raised.
An unfortunate update.— Brooke Grimsley (@BrookeGrimsley) February 21, 2023
Janae Edmondson lost both of her legs due to the severity of her injuries. If you can please donate below. https://t.co/IZBu405vbe
A community group called Citizens for a Greater Downtown St. Louis shared footage of the crash on Twitter, which shows the Audi speeding down the roadway. Edmondson was immediately taken to a nearby hospital with her parents at her side, according to Mid TN VBC's statement. Her condition has stabilized, though her injuries are "serious."
Earlier in the evening, before 9 PM, this vehicle sped through 11th ST at St. Charles ST, flipping the vehicle and hitting multiple other vehicles. Occupants or pedestrians appeared to lay in the street and at least one appeared pinned under a vehicle. @JasonHallSTL… https://t.co/afabv2gWFs pic.twitter.com/5MJXCEpaXH— Citizens for a Greater Downtown St. Louis (@Citizens4STL) February 19, 2023
In these difficult times, the Mid-TN VCB is asking the community "to pray for Janae, her family, and her teammates." They said, "The whole club loves Janae and values her athletic gifts, toughness, determination, and perseverance," per PEOPLE.
Police said the driver was allegedly 21-year-old Daniel Riley, who has been arrested. Riley has been charged with multiple counts of assault and one count of operating a vehicle without a valid driver's license, according to the statement.
Police said the 21-year-old suspect who hit Janae Edmondson did not have a license, was out on bond for a previous robbery case, and violated an order to wear a GPS monitoring device and be on house arrest.https://t.co/fw64vPBYw1— WTHR.com (@WTHRcom) February 21, 2023
An investigation into the crash that injured Edmondson is ongoing, as per police.
Cover Image Source: GoFundMe