Student killed in crash

Apr 252006
Authors: Brandon Lowrey

Memorial services were held Tuesday for a cheerful CSU freshman who died over the weekend after she lost control of her Jeep and rolled into the Interstate 25 median.

Abigail Hoffman, a 19-year-old resident of Westfall Hall, was pronounced dead at the scene. Her funeral is set for today in Highlands Ranch, a friend said, but family members could not be reached for details on Tuesday.

Residents of Westfall Hall, where she lived on the sixth floor, have been offered counseling, said Melissa Glenn, a resident assistant.

“She was a very well-liked person, by everyone on the floor and in the building,” Glenn said. “A very happy person.”

On Saturday afternoon, Hoffman was driving southbound on I-25 near Berthoud when, at about 1:55 p.m., her Jeep Wrangler veered onto the right shoulder, according to a preliminary Colorado State Patrol report. Police suspect she overcorrected and spun the SUV back into traffic lanes. The Jeep tipped and rolled over several times before it crashed into the median.

Hoffman was wearing a seat belt, but her Jeep lacked air bags, the report stated.

Hoffman, who came to CSU from Highlands Ranch, had no drugs or alcohol in her system at the time of the crash and died instantly, said Weld County Deputy Coroner Chris Robillard.

“We don’t know what caused it, and apparently we never will,” Robillard said Tuesday.

The traffic flow didn’t seem unusual, he said, nor did anything else about the driving conditions.

Bryan Kaiser, a friend of Hoffman’s for the past six years, found out from friends about her death at the lacrosse game between CSU and University of Colorado-Boulder on Saturday. On Tuesday he recalled the cheer and joy she brought to his life.

“She has one of those laughs you could hear from a mile away, and everyone knew it,” he said. “In high school, she ran every pep assembly. And no matter how boring they were, we always came to see Abby.

“She basically was just the light of the world for everybody who knew her,” Kaiser said. “Just one of those people you never thought anything bad could happen to.”

Brandon Lowrey can be reached at

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