|Birth: ||Jul. 15, 1981|
|Death: ||Nov. 6, 2008|
Police believe alcohol may be involved in a crash that claimed the life of a mother and two children near Morris, Ill.
A vehicle traveling west on Gardner Blacktop struck a vehicle traveling south on Illinois Route 47 about 8 p.m. in an unincorporated area near Mazon, according to Grundy County Sheriff's police.
The impact forced the southbound vehicle to roll several times before coming to rest in a cornfield southwest of the intersection, police said.
A mother and her two children, all from Dwight, were killed in the crash.
Kaitlyn Jahn, 11 months, and Ryan Jahn, 3 years old, were ejected from their seats and taken to Morris Hospital where they were pronounced dead about 9:30 p.m.
The children's mother, Amanda Jahn, 27, was pinned in the vehicle and pronounced dead at the scene.
The other driver is being treated at Morris Hospital. Police say she has several previous drunken driving convictions.
Grundy County Coroner John W. Callahan said the investigation continued early Friday.
The Grundy County Coroner's office, Grundy County Sheriff's Department and Illinois State Police are handling the investigation.
Amanda Jahn was driving home from teaching a violin lesson, her two young children strapped into their car seats, when a vehicle came barreling through a stop sign and slammed into their car.
A repeat drunken driver was behind the wheel of the other vehicle, officials said.
Josh Jahn, a volunteer firefighter, was at home with his police scanner on. When he heard the accident come over the radio, he drove to the scene because he had just talked with his wife and knew she was driving on that road.
Jahn saw his son being loaded onto the ambulance but not his wife. He followed the ambulance to the hospital, where he kept asking where his wife was until someone told him she had died at the scene.
Placed behind the three caskets of Amanda Jahn and her children at their funeral Tuesday stood a symbol of Amanda and her passion, her violin. It is one of the only things to survive the accident that involved an alleged drunken driver and killed the young family.
Josh Jahn, the husband and father of the victims, said when he took the violin out of its case it was only covered in dust from when the air bags deployed.
Amanda and her two children, 11-month-old Kaitlyn and 3-year-old Ryan, were killed Thursday while on their way home to Dwight. Amanda had been teaching a violin lesson in Joliet and just picked up her children from her parents' home in Morris. The family was going south on Illinois 47 when another vehicle blew a stop sign at Gardner Blacktop, in unincorporated Mazon, and crashed into them. The crash caused the Jahn vehicle to roll several times into a field. Amanda died on scene and the children were taken to Morris Hospital before they were pronounced dead.
Ann Marie Getz, 43, of Streator, is being charged with four counts of aggravated driving under the influence. She is currently in serious condition at Morris Hospital and under police guard. She is expected to be released next week and will be taken directly to the Grundy County jail.
More than 2,000 people attended the visitation Monday at the First Christian Church of Morris and hundreds paid their respects at the funeral Tuesday morning.
Amanda's sister and father-in-law were the first to share their memories of the growing family.
"The earth is a poorer place and Heaven a happier one," said Ed Jahn to the hundreds of people in the church.
Just 10 days before, Josh said his family was all dressed up standing in the same church for Amanda's sister's wedding. His son pulled his daughter down the aisle in a wagon and his wife was the maid of honor. He said she was "the most beautiful woman" he had ever known.
"I had never been more proud of my family," he said during the funeral.
That day of celebration was filled with memories he will never forget, including the last dance he had with his daughter. He said as the father-daughter dance came on for his sister-in-law he couldn't help but go to his daughter and pick her up for a dance. Kaitlyn would have been 1 year old Saturday.
"I got to dance with Cinderella," Josh said.
During another dance with his wife that night he said he and his wife reminisced of their own wedding eight years ago.
"I told her . . . she smelled like our wedding day," Josh said and added he asked his wife if there was a special wedding day perfume she used. He said his wife laughed and said it was a secret. "She was just kidding and said it must be all the hair spray," he said as the funeral guests burst out in laughter.
He shared memories of his family throughout his eulogy bringing both laughter and tears to the hundreds in the room.
Josh described Ryan as a great big brother who loved his little sister. Ryan and Josh had a lot of father-son time this summer fishing and visiting festivals including Corn Fest in Morris where Ryan played "air guitar" on stage.
But the root of his family's happiness came from his wife who he met at her 8th-grade graduation party, he said. Both Amanda and Josh were home-schooled and Josh's sister was friends with Amanda. At the party he noticed her blonde curly hair and blue eyes immediately.
"On Dec. 3, 2000, I married my best friend," Josh said.
He later described his wife as a gentle spirit with an open heart who thrived as a mother.
"Our children were so well behaved. They were just little angels. I remembered today that a couple of days before this happened I told her how proud of her I was (with her as a mother)," he said.
After the funeral Josh held a press conference on the church stage standing next to a picture of his family. As he spoke of his tragic loss he fidgeted with what appeared to be two of his wife's rings barely fitting halfway down his fingers.
Josh said his family was killed by a drunk driver with prior driving-under-the-influence convictions.
"They might still be here if there were stronger conviction laws," he said.
He pleaded for people to remember his family and to not drink and drive and to be responsible.
"Use a designated driver, take a cab, or call a friend. Three beautiful lives were abruptly cut short," Josh said.
Josh, a firefighter for Dwight Fire Department, credited his "family, church family, fire department family," and his faith in Jesus Christ for helping him through this.
"But I miss them so much. I will see them again," Josh said.
On Thursday, just minutes before the accident, Josh had spoken with his wife who said she was on her way home and that the kids were asleep. She told her husband she'd see him in 20 minutes and he told her he loved her.
About 15 minutes later he was watching TV when he heard his fire radio go off and that an ambulance was headed to a scene.
"I didn't think anything of it until I remembered where she would be," Josh said.
Josh said he began calling his wife's cell phone repeatedly, but she never answered. So he told himself just to go to the scene and see if it was his family.
When he got there he saw his son being taken in an ambulance and followed it to the hospital where both his children were.
"I kept asking where my wife was," he said before he found out she died at the scene.
It's too early to know what he will do next, but he doesn't plan to leave Dwight.
As an active member of the church and involved with technology and production he said he will be getting ready for the Christmas play. He wants to stay with the fire department and take time to visit the friends that have been there for him.
"I plan to pour myself into these things because I know my family is safe now," Josh said.
His wife, Amanda, or "Mandy" to friends, had been home schooled and began playing the violin as a child. She toured the United States and Europe with the Chicago Consort of Western Springs.
Their son, Ryan, loved accompanying his dad to work at the fire station. The church nursery staff fought over caring for their baby daughter, Kaitlyn, because she was so well behaved.
Josh Jahn was counting his best friend among his losses.
"The house is quiet," he said. "I miss them so much. I know they're in heaven and I'll see them again."
Amanda N. "Mandy" Jahn, 27, of Dwight, Illinois, passed away Thursday evening, November 6, 2008, following a traffic crash north of Dwight.
Born July 15, 1981, in Joliet, Illinois, she was the daughter of Thomas an Kandyce (Johnson) Borneman of Morris, Illinois. Manday was born and educated in Morris and was home schooled by her mother. She received her diploma from Midwest Christian Academy in Bloomington.
An accomplished musician, Mandy began playing violin at the age of four. She would continue to play and tour the country with Chicago Consort of Western Springs. Most recently traveling, for her second time, in Europe.
On December 3, 2000, she married Josh Jahn in the First Christian Church in Morris by Pastor Chuck Richardson.
She enjoyed scrapbooking, walking, and taking her children to the park, and was always looking for ways to make her family happier. Mandy touched so many lives in such a short period of time.
A member of First Christian Church in Morris, Illinois, where she was very active with the youth group. She was active in music and singing at Frist Christian Church.
Mandy is survived by her husband, Josh; her parents, Tom and Kandy Borneman of Morris, Illinois; her maternal grandmother, Mrs. Margaret Johnson and her paternal grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Glenn Borneman of Newark, Illinois; three sisters, Lindy (Zac) Bailey of Dwight, Illinois, Heidi and Hanah Borneman, both at home.
Funeral services will be held at 10:30A.M., Tuesday, November 11, 2008, at the First Christian Church in Morris, Illinois with Pastor Chuck Richardson officiating. Visitation will be Monday, November 10, 2008 at the First Christian Church in Morris, from 3:00P.M. until 8:00P.M. Burial will be in Sample Cemetery. U.C. Davis and Sons Funeral Home, LTD., entrusted with arrangements.
Memorial gifts in Mandy's honor may be made to the family. Please leave online condolences by clicking on Mandy's name at the top of this obituary. For further information or assistance, please call 815-942-0084.
Ryan Jahn (2004 - 2008)*
Kaitlyn Jahn (2007 - 2008)*
Created by: AMCorBTC
Record added: Nov 07, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 31205135