NORTH ANDOVER — Described as outgoing and caring, Yahaira Colon was a dedicated mother of four children ages 5 to 14.
On Sunday around 10 p.m. she was driving a friend home from her condo, her relatives said.
That would be the last night of her life.
"She was taking her friend home but she never made it," said Jeannette Colon, 28, Yahaira's younger sister.
Yahaira, 30, of North Andover, was pronounced dead after a crash near 420 Waverly Road. Her friend was airlifted to a Boston hospital for treatment of critical injuries.
Police have not identified Colon's passenger or the driver of the other car, who was also injured and taken to Lawrence General Hospital for treatment.
A North Andover and state police investigation into the fatal crash continued Tuesday. No charges have been filed yet.
Jeannette and family members said they were told Yahaira saw an oncoming car swerving, pulled over and attempted to get out of its path. Her vehicle was hit anyway, her sister said.
"She was parked when he hit her," Jeannette said.
Yahaira's SUV landed on its right side near a front lawn. The other vehicle, a sedan, was stopped nearby.
Jeannette said her sister was highly devoted to her four children, ages 14, 12, 7 and 5.
"One of her biggest wishes was to keep her children together. She wanted them to grow up together," Jeannette said. "And she said if anything ever happened to her she wanted them to be with my mom." .
Yahaira is survived by her parents, Betsy Cruz and Jose Colon.
Cruz started a Go Fund Me account to raise money to pay for her daughter's funeral and burial.
"Yahaira was loved by so many. She was always the life of the party. Anyone who knew her knows she was always the first to be that supportive friend/family for anyone," her mother wrote on the Go Fund Me page.
Sadly, this is the second major loss the Colon family has had in past few years.
Jeannette said her sister was the one who kept her family together and focused when their brother Jose "Machi" Colon Jr. was killed in Lawrence on March 5, 2016.
He was killed near Sam's Grocery Store at 389 Broadway in Lawrence.
Victor Laboy, 46, was later sentenced to 18 to 20 years in state prison on the reduced charge of manslaughter for the killing.
Laboy was originally charged with first-degree murder.
At Laboy's sentencing, Yahaira and other relatives spoke both in court and to the Eagle-Tribune outside of the courthouse.
“You live while my brother and pieces of me do not,” Yahaira said in a victim impact statement in court.
Sunday night’s crash remains under investigation by North Andover Officer Anthony Sousa, a state police accident reconstruction team and the Essex County District Attorney’s Office.
Anyone with information about the accident is asked to call Sousa at (978) 683-3168.
To contribute to the Go Fund Me account, visit the website and search for Yahaira Colon.
Follow staff reporter Jill Harmacinski on Twitter @EagleTribJill.