Memorial planned for toddler killed in Little Walnut River crash

Published: Jun. 13, 2020 at 8:28 PM CDT
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A memorial is planned Monday for a

when the truck she was riding in crashed into the Little Walnut River in Leon.

Chris Johnson, the girl's father, was driving the truck. During a disturbance with police, investigators said he drove the truck over a large embankment and into the river. The Butler County Sheriff's Office said alcohol was believed to be involved.

Emergency crews located Johnson's body almost immediately. Crews pulled recovered the body Addison Johnson, his 20-month-old daughter, from the waters in April.

Janelle Jones thinks about March 11 every day, a drinking and driving accident that took her whole world from her: her fiancé and her little girl.

"There's still memories everywhere you look but all of Addie's stuff is still in her bedroom,” Jones said. “If I need to go in there, I'll go grab what I need and get out because it's still hard to go in there. It still smells like her. Everything's there."

Monday would have been Addison’s second birthday so her mom, Janelle, organized a memorial and celebration of the girl's life at Three Wooden Crosses Church.

"That way we can celebrate her life and celebrate her birthday all together when everybody's there," Jones said.

Jones is making Addison shirts for family and friends to wear on Monday. But moving forward, she plans to use her experiences to raise awareness and speak at DUI meetings.

"Chris was a very good dad,” Jones said. “Everybody knows she was a daddy's girl anyway and that they're always going to be together."