By Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Friends and family are trying to grasp what happened to a beloved singer and hospital administrator who was killed on her way to a voice audition.

The crash happened in downtown Minneapolis Thursday evening near 15th Street and Park Avenue. Officers say a driver hit Krista Sandstrom’s Honda Fit and tried to get away.

Israel Delos Santos was eventually arrested for criminal vehicular homicide.

Back in April, Krista Sandstrom and her husband joined together in song.

This wasn’t just a hobby for the mother of two, it was a passion. Bob Peskin is the executive director of the Minnesota Chorale.

“She had a beautiful soprano voice and was able to sing all kinds of projects,” Peskin said.

Krista Sandstrom has been part of the group for 17 years.

“We’ve been rehearsing with Krista for this project she’s doing with the Minnesota Orchestra and now she’s gone. It’s incomprehensible really,” Peskin said.

Friends started to worry when she didn’t show up at a Thursday night audition. Her husband, whom she met in college, notified police.

“We’ve been reeling ever since and also just heart sick thinking what it’s been like for Christian and for their kids,” Peskin said.

A singer, a mother and a wife, Krista was also a leader at HCMC where she worked as director of organization development and learning. Co-workers say they will miss her insight, dedication and sense of humor.

Walt Chesley is the vice president of human resources at HCMC. He gave this statement Sunday.

“We are saddened to learn of the death of our colleague, Krista Sandstrom, Director of Organization Development & Learning.  In her 6 years at HCMC, Krista supported the development of employees throughout our organization and was a strong advocate for employee growth and wellness. We will miss her insight, dedication, and sense of humor. All of us were touched in some way by Krista’s contributions. Our thoughts and prayers are with Krista’s family during this difficult time.”

Peskin agrees, saying Sandstrom was special.

“I remember every time she would come into rehearsal she had a twinkle in her eye and just a great smile. She was happy to be there and that made the people around her happy to be there, happy to be singing with her and that type of impact is incalculable,” he said.

Of her intelligence he says, “She was really brilliant. You get in a room of smart people and the smartest ones stand out, she was that kind of person.”

Visitation for Krista Sandstrom will be held Thursday June 8 from 4-8 .p.m at Mueller – Bies Funeral Home in Roseville. There will also be a celebration of life gathering on Friday, June 9. Details will come at a later time.

Comments (3)
  1. Chuck Ashley says:

    The reporter states “Tried to Get Away” that implies the driver tried but was apprehended? If so who is the perp? If the driver did get away? How about some possible “Eyewitness Accounts” of what the driver looked like race/height/weight along with make/model/color of vehicle. How can We the Public assist the authorities in finding the killer of this young mother if we do Not have the information needed? If the perp was caught then Why is the drivers identity being withheld?
    Don’t they teach Who What Where When & How to you reporters at journalism school anymore?

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