'The kind of person she was': Woman killed while trying to help driver hit by truck on I-95

"She was so brave and strong, but did it with such gentleness and it always came from her heart," her sister said.
WILMINGTON, Delaware (WPVI) -- A West Chester University security officer, who was hit while trying to help a driver on the side of the road in Wilmington, Delaware, has died.

The crash happened Sunday morning along I-95 near the Delaware Avenue off-ramp.

The victim has been identified as 25-year-old Cecilia Escobar-Duplan.

The volunteer firefighter, daughter, sister and so much more was killed Sunday around 4:15 a.m. trying to do what she always wanted to do: help someone.

"She was so brave and strong, but did it with such gentleness and it always came from her heart," said her sister, Mirian.

Mirian Escobar did the majority of the talking at a news conference at the Wilmington Manor Fire Department where Cecilia was a volunteer.

Their mother was seen mostly in tears.

Police say Escobar-Duplan was hit by a vehicle on I-95 south in Wilmington near the Delaware Avenue off-ramp. She had stopped to give id to someone else who had crashed.

Mirian says Cecilia was her role model.

"She was supposed to be the first person to graduate from college. She paved the way for all of us, me and my siblings," said Mirian.

It's not hard to see why Cecilia was a role model: she was already quite accomplished.

Along with being a member at the Wilmington Manor Fire Department, she was employed as a Security Officer at West Chester University.

While she was working, she was also attending school there to finish her Criminal Justice undergraduate degree. She previously acquired an Associates in Criminal Justice at Delaware Technical and Community College.

"She was very much a people person, outgoing, people loved talking to her," said Chief Ray Stevenson of the West Chester University Police Department.

In fact, Escobar-Duplan was returning home after a long shift Sunday at West Chester before she decided to try and help someone else. That surprises no one who knew her.

"Cecilia just brought a light to the station that few people bring," said Chief Chad Ingram of Wilmington Manor Fire Department.

"That brought her so much joy. Every day she would come and tell us, 'I did this. We helped this person.' She would hear the alarm and say 'I need to go,'" said Mirian.

Her family also says Cecila's main career goal in life was to become a Delaware State Police Trooper. Everyone we spoke with says she would have accomplished that goal.

Police say the driver who hit her is cooperating with the investigation.
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