Buckner, Illinois – An Illinois bride was killed in a motorcycle accident just minutes after exchanging vows with her new husband.
Jana Miles-Burnett,40, and William Burnett, 31, were married at about 6:30 p.m. on Saturday. The couple had met through mutual friends. Jana Miles-Burnett’s daughter, Sarah Smillie told Inside Edition that the couple had a whirl-wind romance, deciding to be married after only a few months.
“There wasn’t a time that I had seen her happier.” Smillie, 22 said of her mother, “If they were together, she was smiling.”
Bride Killed En Route To Reception
After the ceremony, the couple rode on Burnett’s motorcycle, waving on family and friends to start a procession to the reception.
According to Smillie’s husband, Khole Smillie, “Jana waved everyone on because she wanted to be the last one…they all got to the reception and they saw ambulances and firetrucks going back.”
It was later determined that a deer ran onto the road and into the newlyweds’ lane. Burnett swerved and Miles-Burnett, was thrown onto the ground.
Miles Burnett was rushed to the hospital, still wearing her wedding gown, but could not be saved. She was pronounced dead an hour later.
Leaves Behind Widower, Two Children
Her new widower, William Burnett, suffered minor injuries in the crash.
“He’s holding up” Smillie said of her new stepfather, “Every hour or so he breaks down.”
Jana Miles-Burnett worked as a 911 dispatcher for the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office. Khole Smillie said his mother-in-law “she looked over local officers and she looked over me, and she definitely helped me and Sarah along.”
Miles-Burnett also leaves behind a 14-year-old son, Cody.
Accidents Caused By Wild Animals
In rural communities, it’s not uncommon for auto accidents to be caused by deer or other animals in the road. Especially during mating season, a deer’s behavior can be erratic.
Many wonder what legal steps to take after an accident involving a wild animal and, unfortunately, the options are limited. The driver will often have to make a claim on their own insurance policy.
Headquartered out of St. Louis, Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers serves clients throughout all of Missouri, Illinois, and Arkansas. If you’re unsure of whether or not you’ll need a personal injury lawyer for your case, our attorneys can help you understand your options, and determine whether or not an attorney is best for you. There is no obligation and therefore no risk for calling a personal injury lawyer. 314.444.4444.