Deadly crash shuts down I-17 in north Phoenix on Monday morning

Posted at 5:30 AM, May 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-02 21:56:32-04

Dozens of people gathered at St. Vincent De Paul on Tuesday to honor the life and memory of a woman killed while trying to help an injured motorcyclist on the roadway.

The accident shut down a portion of Interstate 17 near Loop 101, south of Yorkshire on Monday morning.

Department of Public Safety officials said Beverly Click and the motorcyclist, Johnny Youngblood, were killed in that crash.

According to DPS, around 5 a.m. Monday, they responded to a single motorcycle collision on I-17 south of Yorkshire.

Officials say Youngblood was alert and conscious following the crash as three cars stopped to help the motorcyclist.

Four people were rendering aid to the 38-year-old as a white SUV, driven by 34-year-old Brian Higbee, entered the scene and struck the four bystanders and a car that was stopped.

DPS says Youngblood and a bystander, 53-year-old Beverly Click of Sun City, were killed during this second collision.

Click was described as a selfless woman who lived a life of service and loved her job working in the kitchen at St. Vincent de Paul. 

Click's co-workers and family struggled to understand the tragedy, as they gathered together for a memorial Tuesday morning.

"She was here, now she's gone. Nothing can make this right. How do you give someone their mom back?" said her oldest son, George.

Family members described Click as a woman who opened up her heart and home to many children, and neighborhood kids always knew that had a place to go.

"Just anybody that needed a home, she was a mom to," said her son.

The family also struggled to understand why the driver was cited and released. DPS officials cited Higbee for failure to control a vehicle to avoid collision. 

A DPS spokesman called the incident a terrible tragedy, and said their hearts went out to all of the families involved in the crash.

In a statement, DPS officials said, "The whole report will be reviewed by detectives to see if any additional charges will be filed. At this time no element rises to the level of criminal action. This was a tragic situation where many factors came into play. Our hearts go out to the families."

DPS also says distracted driving is not believed to have played a factor. 

The family has set up a GoFundMe account to help pay for funeral expenses.  

Two other good Samaritans were seriously injured in the crash.