Woman’s unborn baby dies after Pasco County crash

Her vehicle was hit from behind by a pickup, causing a chain reaction crash.
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Published Dec. 31, 2019

A woman’s unborn baby has died after a chain-reaction crash in Pasco County earlier this month, the Florida Highway Patrol reports in a news release.

Makala Marie Etheridge Lu, 22, of Hudson, was driving a 2019 Kia Forte north on U.S. 19 approaching State Road 52 on the afternoon of Dec. 20. A 2-year-old girl, Sereneity Etheridge-Lucas, also of Hudson, was her passenger.

A northbound 1996 Toyota Tacoma driven by Gregory Armitage, 59, of Port Richey, hit the Kia from behind as Etheridge-Lucas and the driver in front of her, Heather Lee Stuart, 54, of New Port Richey, who drove a 2014 Honda CRV, slowed for a fourth car, a 2015 F-150 pickup driven Matthew Richard Murphy, 49, of New Port Richey, that had stopped for the traffic signal at State Road 52.

The impact caused the Kia to hit the CRV, which then hit the F-150 pickup.

Etheridge Lu suffered serious injuries. Her unborn baby was pronounced dead on Monday, according to the highway patrol news release.

Her passenger, the 2-year-old girl, was not injured.

Armitage, Stuart and Murphy also were not injured.

Troopers said alcohol use is not suspected among any of the drivers. All the drivers and passengers involved were using seatbelts or child restraints, troopers reported.

Troopers said an investigation remains under way.