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Hot Springs great-grandmother killed when truck crashes into her bedroom

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HOT SPRINGS (KATV) - A Hot Springs woman is dead after a truck crashed into her bedroom early Tuesday morning.

The house on Lacey Street has been cleaned up after the truck drove into 87-year-old Mary Duke's bedroom where police said she was killed instantly by the impact.

"She's one of the cornerstones of this family, and she's going to be extremely missed," said Kay Dukes, Mary's daughter-in-law.

The driver, 20-year-old Nicolas Rowe, reportedly ran a stop sign before running through Duke's gravel yard, grass and the line of roses Duke loved before smashing through the wall.

"How did this happen?" asked Kay. "You think you're safe in your own home and then at 86-years-old, you're a very active individual and you get killed in your own bed by an out-of-control truck."

Police said Rowe then ran away, leaving his truck running and on top of Duke's body. He was brought back to the scene a short time later by a family member or friend and was then taken into custody - though never placed under arrest. At last check, he was at home pending the results of a toxicology test.

Though, as of 5:00 Tuesday evening, Rowe had not been arrested, authorities did tell Channel 7 News that DWI and manslaughter charges were pending against him.

"It's going to be affecting him the rest of his life," said Kay. "We'll be remembering her the rest of ours, but he has to live with it."

Channel 7 News went to Rowe's house Tuesday to speak with him but was told he was asleep.

Duke is survived by two children, six grandchildren and more than a dozen great-grandchildren.

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