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Pedestrian struck by minivan in St. Petersburg dies in hospital

ST. PETERSBURG — Marilyn Sue Skaggs walked everywhere — to the YMCA, the pharmacy, the grocery store, to visit friends.

She knew the perils that pedestrians faced on local roads, so she always tried to be careful.

But on Tuesday afternoon, Skaggs, 64, stumbled and fell in the 3400 block of First Avenue N as she walked to the YMCA.

A van turning left onto the road ran her over. The driver told police he didn't see her. She was not in a crosswalk.

Skaggs died later that night at Bayfront Medical Center.

Police have not completed their investigation of the crash, which could take weeks, and no charges have been filed against the driver of the van, Craig Lee Oden, 43.

Skaggs' home was just blocks away from the YMCA on First Avenue S, where she swam several times a week.

Skaggs' children gathered at her home Wednesday afternoon. She was a grandmother of 14. On this night, a close friend of Skaggs' would have picked her up and driven her to Community Bible Baptist Church to attend services.

"She was always on the go," said her daughter, Sue Griffis of Georgetown, Texas.

Skaggs was born in Columbus, Ohio. She came to St. Petersburg in the 1980s, and worked on an assembly line with her husband, Bernard Lee, who died in 2004.

Her family is planning a public memorial service for Skaggs at 4 p.m. Saturday at Community Bible Baptist Church, 3800 17th Ave. N

This year alone, 23 people walking on roads in Pinellas, Pasco, Hillsborough and Hernando counties have been killed by automobiles, and another 13 were injured, according to published reports. On bicycles, another seven were killed and were nine injured.

Luis Perez can be reached at

Pedestrian struck by minivan in St. Petersburg dies in hospital 04/27/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 27, 2011 10:49pm]
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