Lady Becomes Wife, Widow In 8 Hours

Will and Nikki
Will and Nikki

A bridegroom died on his way home with his new bride after their wedding reception.

William Riley Knight, who served in the US Army Rangers in the 82nd Airborne Division, died with another woman, not his wife, when he was hit and run over by three cars on a road in Crown Point, Indiana.

He had been married for less than eight hours.

“I went from a being a newlywed to a widow in less than 48 hours – the highest high to the lowest low,” his new wife, now widow, Nikki, told the Chicago Sun-Times. “It’s a blur.”

“He was the type of person who was willing to put himself on the line and support you no matter what,” she said by phone.

Patti Van Til, Lake County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman told CBS Chicago that the newlyweds were on their way home from their wedding reception when Knight stopped to give help to a female who was walking up an embankment after her car had slid off the road.

“He was just trying to do a good thing for somebody in need,” the spokeswoman said.

“It’s very sad. We have a job to do here, but sometimes it just brings you sadness.”

Knight’s new wife Nikki was in the truck alongside her 49-year-old husband, when he went to aid the woman in the other car – Linda Darlington, a 42-year-old – who was also killed.

“She was still in her wedding dress,” Van Til said.

Knight had parked his vehicle in a nearby driveway leaving Nikki to wait in the car.

“He said, ‘We’ve got to stop, it’s late and they need help,'” Nikki told the Chicago Sun-Times.

“One of the first vehicles was coming eastbound and struck both individuals,” said John Buncich, Lake County Sheriff. “A car right behind them, the first vehicle, also struck the two, and unfortunately a third vehicle that eastbound also struck the couple.”

All three motorists who struck Knight and Darlington stayed at the scene to give evidence to police when they arrived.

Nikki, a registered nurse, said that from their truck it looked like a car had driven over a lump of snow when she heard a thud. When she went out to the scene, she said, and realised it was Knight and the woman he went to help, Darlington. Neither had pulses.

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