Cicero-North Syracuse student injured in car crash dies

CNS student killed in crash, Northern Boulevard & Totman Road, Cicero / File photo

A Cicero-North Syracuse student seriously injured in a car crash has died.

17-year-old Taylor Fleming passed away around 11 p.m. Sunday night, according to C-NS principal Tim Bednarski. He received word of Fleming's passing from her uncle.

The C-NS senior was seriously hurt last Thursday night in a two-car crash in Cicero. Onondaga County Sheriff's deputies say Fleming was driving her 2003 Dodge Neon through the intersection of Northern Boulevard and Totman Road when she was hit by another car. The impact of the crash caused extensive damage to both vehicles. Fleming's car landed in the median and she had to be cut out of the vehicle.

Sunday night, Fleming's family and friends gathered at St. Margaret's Church in Mattydale in her honor.

"I'm so glad that she's been in my life and she's my best friend and I wouldn't have wanted anyone else to spend 17 years with," Fleming's older sister, Kaleigh told us.

"She's just indescribable, you see her and you just smile regardless of whether you know her," Fleming's boyfriend Shawn Radder said.

Fleming's sisters say it was amazing to see her strength as she fought for her life.

"She did a great job, I'm so proud of her, all she did was fight," said Fleming's younger sister Jordan. "I know she's touched every single person in there whether they know it or not, but somehow they've gotten to them," Kaleigh Fleming said.

Counselors are on hand today at Cicero-North Syracuse High School with about 100 students seeking counseling.

The school's principal tells us Fleming's organs are being donated and will benefit 60 people. It's unknown which organs will be donating, but the people at the Central New York Eye and Tissue Bank wish there were more families like Taylor Fleming's. Paul Marron told CNY Central's Jim Kenyon, "There's over 100 thousand people in the country awaiting life saving organ transplants, in New York State alone that number is about 10 thousand."

Marron says every day 18 people die waiting for a transplant that did not make it on time. He says not only do organ donations help the lives of others, it also helps families deal with their grief. "It not only makes the tragedy tolerable, but post tragedy it gives meaning to the actual donation and the family members."

Taylor Fleming is being remembered for her kindness and huge heart. Principal Bednarski described Fleming as, just outstanding, she had an infectious smile that lights up a room.

Bednarski said she was very kind and would often spend her time outside of class working with special needs students.

This is just a shame, Bednarski said.

How will you remember Taylor? What memories would you like to share? Leave your thoughts and condolences here.