Members of the Ellison family say they're at a loss for words after losing two loved ones at once. Just before 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Jakeda Ellison and her 9-year-old daughter, Shamaylaka Ellison, were killed in a car wreck. Georgia State Patrol says it happened at the intersection of Imperial Mill Road and Highway 24 in Eatonton. Yvonne Thomas spoke to the matriarch of the Ellison family about 'her babies.'
The Ellison home will never be the same, and Brenda Ellison is still trying to make sense of it all. “They were like sisters. They loved each other,” said Brenda Ellison, mother and grandmother to the victims. “I'm gonna miss them a lot.
Hearing that her daughter and granddaughter were in a car wreck, Ellison raced to the scene. “A neighbor up the road came and told me that she saw the accident. I started walking... and she told me, "You can't walk up Madison Highway." And I told her I'm gonna walk up Madison Highway to see my babies because they're gone.”
Somehow, Brenda said she just knew. 9-year-old Shamaylaka Ellison died at the scene.
Her mother, 37-year-old Jakeda Ellison, passed away soon after at a Putnam General Hospital.
“When something like this happens, it affects everyone,” said Otis Harrison, family friend.
Friends say the Ellisons were the "go-to girls" in their neighborhood. “Always loving, braided hair, always there for the kids,” said Harrison. “They called her Mama 'Keda,” said Brenda Ellison. “If you needed anything, you just call Mama 'Keda and she would do it for you.”
But as hard as this loss is, Brenda Ellison believes the 'inseparable duo' remains intact. “They're together, and I know they're at peace. They're at peace.”
Shamaylaka was a student at Putnam County Elementary. Principal Scott Sauls says they had extra counselors at school for students and staff.