MASSILLON, Ohio (WJW)-- Deputies with the Stark County Sheriff’s Office say a Massillon woman was struck and killed by a car when she tried to save an injured animal in the road.
Investigators said 55-year-old Tina Marie Icenhower spotted an injured cat on Route 241 just outside Massillon on Friday night.
Icenhower stopped her car partially in the roadway, got out and was trying to save the injured animal, when she was struck and killed by a car. Detectives said the driver told deputies he did not realize he struck a person until he arrived home and saw the damage on his vehicle. He then returned to the scene to speak with investigators.
The pet cat that Tina Icenhower was trying to save was found dead near her body.
When asked how he wanted Icenhower to be remembered, longtime friend Glen Cale choked back tears as he said, “As a loving mother and a friend.”
Cale said Icenhower also always had a warm spot in her heart for all creatures, great and small.
“She tried to care of them, she always has since I've known her. When she was here, she was always feeding the birds, the squirrels, and we had all these other animals wandering in. She always had something out for them to eat," he said.
Mourners said Icenhower died the way she lived: Trying to protect an animal in trouble.
"She loved them, she cared about them, she didn't want to see them hurt. That's probably why it happened. I mean, we don't know why it happened, but she cared so maybe that's why,” said longtime friend Beverly Baker. “When you lose your friend like that, the way it happened, it just hurts you. I don't think I'll ever get over it.”
The family started a GoFundMe page to pay for her cremation.