BALLWIN, Mo. (KSDK) - A wrong turn-turns into a terrible tragedy. A Ballwin woman was killed in a car accident early Sunday, after her friends and family say she was just trying to get them home safely.
24 year old Brooke Bahmler had volunteered to be a designated driver. She and two other young women were leaving Laclede's Landing, heading home when they missed their exit and wound up in Sauget.
When Bahmler tried to make a u-Turn at Route 3 and Yellow Brick Road, she was t-boned by another car. The driver of that car and Bahmler's two passengers were injured but survived.
Brooke Bahmler was 24 years old and in a serious relationship with her boyfriend. Her family is devastated and shocked by this sudden loss of life and her 22 year old sister, Abbie who was in the passenger's seat remains in the ICU tonight.
"She was the rock of the family, Brooke was kind of the glue holding everything together," says family member Merrily Stanley.
She says Brooke could light up the room. Her life was filled with friendship and family, especially her relationship with her sister. They were only one year apart.
"They are very close, they are like best friends they spend all of their time together, the live together, they work together," says Stanley.
She says she's been in Brooke or Brookie's life since she was four years old and has watched Brookie grow up into a responsible young woman.
"She was just a very sweet joyful person so, she has a lot of friends was a cheerleader in high school," she says. "Just had that kind of sunny disposition very happy all the time."
Stanley says now the family is just trying to keep it together for Bookie's mom and her sister, Abbie.
"She's hanging in there, she's obviously very upset, she was in the front seat so she just said it's not fair and is pretty distraught," says Stanley.
"It's heartbreaking, it really is, she took the wrong exit," says Sauget Police Chief Patrick Delaney.
He says the accident was a tragedy.
"Her friends said that she was the designated driver and her family says that she doesn't even drink alcohol," he says.
Purely accidental, a life taken too soon.
"I don't think time ever heals, you know she will just always be in our hearts," says Stanley.
Chief Delaney says he doesn't believe any alcohol was involved in this accident, with Brooke or with the other driver. Toxicology reports will most likely prove that.
The other passenger, a friend of the sisters, is doing better. She is resting at home tonight with a few minor injuries.