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Family of Edith Schmucker may file wrongful death lawsuit over August car crash


The family of Edith Schmucker may file a wrongful death lawsuit over the August car crash that also killed Rep. Jackie Walorksi (R-Jimtown) and two staffers.

The 56-year-old Nappanee resident was driving south on state route 19 near Wakarusa when she was hit by a northbound SUV driven by Zachery Potts, Walorski’s district director and chair of the St. Joseph County Republican Party.

Police say Potts crossed the centerline for unknown reasons. He, Schmucker, Walorski and communications director Emma Thomson were all killed in the accident.

According to court documents filed in Elkhart County, Schmucker died without a will. Circuit court judge Michael Christofeno has appointed two special masters to administer any potential wrongful death lawsuit.

Damages would be distributed to Schmucker’s 17-year-old son. No lawsuit has been filed as of Thursday, according to court records.

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Jakob Lazzaro came to Indiana from Chicago, where he graduated from Northwestern University in 2020 with a degree in Journalism and a double major in History. Before joining WVPE, he wrote NPR's Source of the Week e-mail newsletter, and previously worked for CalMatters, Pittsburgh's 90.5 WESA and North by Northwestern.