Over the weekend, I received sad news about my sorority sister, Marileidy “Mari” Morel. She passed away last Saturday, July 4th during the evening in Fairfield, CT while walking her dog.
As I woke up to read the text I received in the middle of the night, I was so shocked by the information my sister shared with me. I had found out that Mari was in a car accident that evening, and did not make it. She was only 32 years old. As I write this post, I find my sadness growing, because this was such a horrible thing that happened to such a beautiful spirit.
Mari and I pledged for Omega Phi Chi (Multicultural) Sorority, Inc. during our freshman/sophomore year in college, we both crossed into an amazing sisterhood and attended Montclair State Univeristy. She was my chapter sister (Mu Chapter), and although we weren’t as close as some of my other sisters while pledging, I have very fond memories of her as a Neo, and as a younger sister back in 2008-2010. Mari pledged a semester before me. I remember feeling so comforted by her warm spirit as she would always light up a room with her caring and positive energy as soon as she walked in.
Over the years, we haven’t seen each other as much as I would’ve liked, because life gets in the way at times, but I’d like to hold on to the memories of her that are still with me. She was definitely one of the kindest, supportive people I’ve come in contact with at MSU, and I am so proud to be her sister (even if not by blood/DNA). She was such a genuinely nice person.
It is important that I mention, that this is a Hit and Run investigation. The vehicle is believed to be a Dark Green Jeep Wrangler. Damage to the vehicle is likely to be in the front right portion of the jeep. A clear marker lens was recovered at the scene.
I, like my other sisters are hurting right now, because her beautiful soul was taken from us too soon. She had plans for her future, and the driver of the SUV took that away from her. I just really hope her family can find justice, because they deserve it! SHE deserves it.
As mentioned above, this is actively being investigated by the Fairfield CT police. If you can please share this with anyone you know, on your socials/online/etc. that would help tremendously, as information would aid in identifying the driver of this vehicle.
Anonymous tips may be submitted by texting “FPD” plus your tip info to CRIMES (274637), or by going to http://www.fpdct.com/tips
Anyone with information can also call the Fairfield police department at (203) 254-4800 OR, if you are able to provide surveillance video, you can contact Sgt. Michael Paris at (203) 254-4862.
Rest in Paradise Mari*
The vehicle of the person responsible for my sister’s hit and run has been identified, as well as the man behind the wheel. My sisters and I were all very happy to hear that this man was found and taken into custody. This is what we’ve learned so far:
DECLAN P. KOT, AGE 22, OF EASTON is charged with:
- Misconduct with a Motor Vehicle (Class D Felony)
- Evading Responsibility in Operating a Motor Vehicle Resulting in Death
- Failure to Drive in Proper Lane
- Operating a Motor Vehicle without Fenders
- Tampering with Evidence
- Operation of a Motor Vehicle with Tinted Windows without Tinting Sticker
- Operation of Vehicle with Tinted Windshield
This man, a firefighter, has been charged with 7 offenses but I personally feel that this is not enough. I can’t find the article, but there is a separate incident which took place this same weekend, (hit and run) resulting in the same outcome unfortunately. However, this man was not well connected within the community, and is faced with a list of charges that are much more severe (not to mention his bail was much higher). I do not work in law enforcement/have not studied law, but I can confidently say that this deserves more attention. He is expected to arrive in court this Wednesday 7/15 in Fairfield, CT to receive his ruling.
My sisters are doing all that they can to make sure that Mari and her family receive the justice they deserve! If you have read/shared this post, please find more information below on updated ways that you can help:
Today Mari was laid to rest, and although I was unable to attend, I met up with my sisters last week to celebrate Mari and it was a beautiful moment.
Rest in paradise Mari, we love you!