DENVER (KDVR) — Family and friends are forced to say goodbye to their loved one, Kathy Rothman, who was hit and killed by a suspected drunk driver nearly two weeks ago while driving for Uber.
The driver, suspected to be under the influence, is Coban Porter. The University of Denver basketball player was charged on Wednesday with four felony counts related to the crash, including vehicular homicide while driving under the influence, vehicular homicide for reckless driving, vehicular assault while driving under the influence and vehicular assault for reckless driving.
Alison Beach is still in shock.
“Life is so fragile, it can be taken from you in a blink of an eye,” Beach said. “It doesn’t feel real.”
Beach wishes she could wake up from this “bad dream,” but sadly, it’s her new reality — a life without her best friend. She is Rothman’s aunt and describes her as a sweet soul and protector.
Driver ran red light before crash
The crash happened on Jan. 22 just before 2 a.m. at the intersection of South University Boulevard and Buchtel Boulevard.
According to the probable cause statement, Porter was driving at an estimated speed of 50 mph on eastbound Buchtel Boulevard when he ran a red light at South University Boulevard and crashed into Rothman’s vehicle.
The 42-year-old died, and a passenger was seriously hurt.
“I just fell to my knees, and we were both screaming,” Beach recalled. “She’s not here with us on this Earth anymore and it just takes over you.”
Rothman is one of three sisters. Her youngest sister, Erika Beach, relived the moment she found out, saying she received a phone call while at work and rushed home.
“I got to the house, and I saw everyone gathered around and I knew. The first person I called was Kathy, and it went straight to voicemail. I just couldn’t believe it. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to go through,” she sobbed. “I just wish she was back with us.”
Mother taken from her young son
Overcome with grief, several family members gathered to share memories and celebrate Rothman on Thursday, saying she would have wanted her loved ones to smile and laugh.
Alison and Erika Beach agree that Rothman was serious about one thing.
“Family for sure,” Alison Beach said.
All about family. The 42-year-old was a sister, daughter, friend and loving mother to her 4-year-old son, who will now grow up without his mother. A fundraiser has been set up to help with funeral expenses and will go directly to Rothman’s mother, who will now be taking care of her grandson.
Rothman moved to Colorado two years ago to be closer to her own mother and started working for Uber for flexibility, but she worked weekend nights for a vital reason.
“She was working on the weekends because she wanted to make sure people got home safely, especially around a college campus,” Alison Beach shared.
Rothman’s passion for keeping people safe tragically ended her own life. Family members have a message for all drivers.
“If you’re going to take part in alcohol and partying, just do it responsibly, know your limits and don’t drive. Call an Uber,” Alison Beach said.
A growing memorial sits at the crash site flooded with flowers and balloons as friends and family prepare to say goodbye. Rothman will be laid to rest on Saturday.