Residents asked to help in crash aftermath

Published 8:30 am Wednesday, December 7, 2022

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When talking about Melissa Cress, friends and family think of her kindness. Co-workers focus on her smile and how she would make them laugh. Overall, people say the Keysville resident was always thinking of others. Now those who knew her are asking other residents in Charlotte County and the surrounding area to help Melissa’s family, after her sudden death last weekend.

Virginia State Police were called out to the scene of a single-car crash on Route 15 early Saturday morning, close to a quarter-mile north of Route 647.

According to Shelby Crouch, the incident happened around 2:20 a.m. Crouch works as a public relations coordinator for the Virginia State Police.

“A 2009 Nissan Altima was traveling south on Route 15 when it ran off the right side of the road, overcorrected, ran off the left side of the road and struck several trees,” Crouch said.

The driver, 32-year-old Melissa Cress, died at the scene. She was ejected from the vehicle during the collision, Crouch said. As for what caused the accident? Crouch said speed is a possibility, but added the case remains under investigation.

“Melissa was a wonderful person,” said the Charley’s Waterfront Cafe staff in a statement. Melissa was an employee at the restaurant and when The Gazette reached out, staff directed us to their Facebook page, saying the post expressed how they felt about their co-worker.

“Melissa was a wonderful person, full of life, always making us laugh, keeping us on our toes and working to take care of customers and other staff members alike,” the Charley’s staff wrote in their post. “She was a mother, daughter, partner and friend. And we ask that you keep her family and friends in mind as we all navigate this difficult situation.”

People are also being asked, if possible, to help cover funeral costs.

“We want to give our sister, Melissa Cress, the memorial she deserves,” her family members wrote on the GoFundMe project they set up. “(We want) to honor her memory and say our last goodbyes. We are currently asking for donations to help cover the cost of Melissa’s funeral and anything remaining to go to her children.”

The group needs to raise $10,000 to afford the funeral service and as of Monday night, they were at $9,833. To contribute, go to GoFundMe and type in Melissa Cress in the search bar.