PORTLAND, Ore — Julie Zamudio recalls how she and her friend, Karen Kain, both had a deep love of Irish music.
After all, it was a chance meeting that brought them together during the pandemic, Zamudio said, when Kain was passing by her home and heard familiar tunes coming from the doors and windows.
“Karen [was] the sweetest person,” Zamudio said. “Just really generous and kind and thinking about other people all the time.”
On Friday evening, the 57-year-old Kain was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver. According to Tigard Police, she was crossing SW Hall Boulevard near SW Lucille Court around 8:40 p.m. with her 86-year-old mother.
Kain died instantly, Zamudio said. Her mother suffered critical injuries, but police said that she was last reported to be in stable condition.
Zamudio pointed out the stretch of road had little-to-no sidewalks, no crosswalks, and poor lighting.
“If somebody was driving too fast or careless, or texting, or drunk, or any of that, it would be so easy [to hit someone],” she said.
She explained that Kain had recently moved to the block so she could be within walking distance of her mother’s home.
When asked what message she would give the driver of the vehicle, Zamudio said: “Don’t let a mistake ruin your life.”
On Tuesday, police said they had impounded what they called a “vehicle of interest” near the crash scene, but did not release any information about the driver or a suspect.
Earlier, investigators indicated they believed the vehicle that hit Kain and her mother was a darker colored 2015-2016 Jeep Renegade, with significant front end damage.
Anyone with information is asked to call the non-emergency dispatch number at 503-629-0111 and ask to speak to a Tigard officer.