Monica R. Hughes simply adored her 1-year-old grandson and wasn’t afraid to show him.
Hughes, 43, frequently smothered him with hugs and kisses every time she saw him.
The 43-year-old Kansas City woman often said she was eager to see that grandson, JaQuel, grow up.
“She was always with him every chance she got,” Phyllis Carlisle said about her daughter. “She was excited about being a grandmother.”
Hughes, a mother of eight, died about 2:05 a.m. Saturday after she was struck by a vehicle while walking on Bruce R. Watkins Drive just south of 51st Street. The motorist fled before police arrived and remains at large.
Kansas City police believe the suspect vehicle sustained substantial damage to the front right side and to its windshield.
Anyone with information should call the Tips Hotline at 816-474-TIPS (8477).
Funeral services for Hughes were pending Monday.
Carlisle said her daughter loved her children. Carlisle said she is struggling to explain to her grandchildren what happened to their mother. Hughes’ children, four boys and four girls, range in ages from 25 to 2.
“We are all still in shock,” she said. “They’re asking questions: ‘Am I going to see her? Is she really gone?’ ”
Hughes’ 18-year-old daughter, Monique Hughes, expressed her thoughts in a Facebook message.
“July 8 is the day she closed her eyes and opened her eyes to see god,” the daughter wrote. “My mother was someone you can be happy around. My mother is someone who will do everything in her will to make things possible especially if it’s her kids. She be there in a heartbeat no hesitation. My momma was so smart, so amazing, so beautiful, so many things. It hurt badly like bad to even type this and reread it and everything. This right here is powerful. I love my momma so much she was everything. But now she’s in good hands and Always will be.”
Monica Hughes was born and raised in Kansas City. She attended Ruskin High School. As a child, Hughes attended dance classes and took piano lessons.
She had recently worked for an area grocery store and attended Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church in east Kansas City.
“She loved to singing gospel,” said her brother, Sylvester Walker. “She was funny and goofy and loved to crack jokes. She loved her children. We’re going to miss her.”
Carlisle said relatives remain hopeful that the motorist who struck her daughter will surrender to authorities.
“Their conscience is going to get to them,” she said. “I know that it will.”