The North Georgia community is mourning for the death of two of its members. They are rallying to support the family of a mother and her young daughter who were killed in a hit-‘n-run crash with a tractor-trailer Friday in Bartow County.

According to Georgia State Patrol, the 29-year-old mother, identified as Maria Tabuena and her four-year-old daughter Melina Trichell were traveling on I75 when a big rig clipped their car and sent them careening off the interstate into a guard rail.

Witnesses saw that the vehicle hit a guard rail and was launched into a support pillar for an overhead sign. The SUV suddenly burst into flames.

The impact and fire caused the operator and passenger to perish on the scene. The crash claimed the lives of Maria Tabuena, age 29, resident of Calhoun and her passenger, 4-year old Melina Trichell. They were riding in a 1998 Ford Expedition.

After the tractor trailer clipped the SUV, the driver of the tractor trailer involved did not stop.

Georgia State Patrol officers are now searching for the hit-and-run for the tractor trailer that is described as a late 90’s long nose Peterbilt truck. The truck was colored maroon and was pulling a silver trailer. After the mishap, it sustained damage to the right side. Witnesses also described the truck as dirty and needed a good wash.

Anyone with information about the hit-and-run driver is requested to call the Georgia State Patrol office in Cartersville at 770-387-3701.

The accident occurred at about 1:30 in the afternoon and the scene wasn’t cleared until after 5:00 o’clock later. To the consternation of motorists, it caused heavy delays on Interstate 75 northbound near exit 293.

Family and friends are assisting the family by setting up a memorial fund for the family to help pay for funeral costs. Any person who wants to pay it forward can make a donation to the “Trichell Memorial Fund” at any Wells Fargo branch.

Accident victims have rights. You may be eligible for compensation for your injuries, wage loss and medical bills. Contact an experienced   car injury lawyer now for a free consultation.