Daughter was cars away from fatal NC crash: ‘I didn’t know that was my momma’

Elizabeth Cain, victim in a fatal car crash, was a long-time preacher at Lighthouse Pentecostal Church in Winnabow. (Facebook/WECT)

WINNABOW, N.C. (WECT) – It’s been nearly two weeks since 57-year-old Elizabeth Cain died in a fatal car crash in Brunswick County.

“We were in the line of traffic. We were like 10 cars behind the accident,” said Amy Hester, Cain’s daughter. “But I didn’t know that was my momma.”

At the time, Hester didn’t know her mother had died yards away along Highway 87 near Winnabow.

“We all just kind of broke down when we knew 100 percent that it was her,” Hester said as she fought back tears.

The family said they waited hours in the hospital before receiving the devastating news. They traveled home, where tributes to Elizabeth cover nearly every surface.

On Tuesday, Hester cracked open photo albums full of family photos and a lifetime of memories.

“She knows I love her and always have loved her,” said Tommy Cain, Elizabeth’s husband. “She was the best thing that ever happened to me. I loved her to death.”

Their unconditional love lasted 44 years. In that time, the couple had two children and brought in their best friend, Cindy Turner, as one of their own. Turner joined the family Tuesday on the couch where she described how she copes.

“I still call and leave messages on her cell phone,” Turner said. “It just makes me feel better to know, cause I know she can hear me.”

According to the family, Cain was a long-time pastor at both New Beginnings and Victory Outreach. Cain stepped down because of health problems but remained heavily involved.

“Monday night they had prayer, she was in church. Tuesday night, they had something, she was in church. Wednesday night, they had something, she was in church,” Turner said. “If they had something going on, she was in church.”

Turner and the family are now relying on their own spirituality to help them in these difficult times.

Hester said as close as she was to where her mom died, she knows now her mom will never be far away.

“This morning, I was in the shower singing ‘I Will Fly Away,'” Hester said. “That was her favorite song. I miss her. I’m always going to miss her, but I know she is in a better place.”

One of the last lines of the song reads: “I’ll fly away to a land where joys will never end.” The family said that’s exactly where their Elizabeth is now.

Copyright 2017 WECT. All rights reserved.

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