MAPLE GROVE, Minn. (WCCO) — For the first time we’re hearing from friends of a widowed mother from Andover killed while walking with her sister in Maple Grove.

Ann Blake and her sister wanted to spend time together walking along Elm Creek Boulevard. That’s what they were doing Tuesday afternoon when police said an erratic driver hit Ann and killed her. The sisters never heard the car coming.

Grace Lutheran Church Pastor Mark Hellmann knew the Blake family for 17 years. He said through every up and down they turned to their faith.

“That’s what life is all about,” Hellmann said. “Finding the faith to go on in our life.”

Blake’s son is severely autistic. Her husband Dan was diagnosed with cancer and died four months ago after a 10-month battle.

“She worked so hard to make sure they had a good life, a normal life and invested in her children,” said Hellmann.

Blake’s family said in a statement today, “Her life revolved around making sure that both children would have the kind of nurture and care that they needed.”

Now it’s loved ones and friends who will take on that job.

“They’re numb, numb. I’m thankful for the children’s family around them, because this is a strong family,” said Hellman.

Family, friends and neighbors are taking turns caring for the two children now left without a mom or a dad. If you’d like to help a fund has been set up.

The Blake Children’s Fund
Grace Lutheran Church
13655 Round Lake Boulevard Northwest
Andover, MN 55304-3659

Comments (33)
  1. Research says:

    Money’s sent.

    1. canigetsomeslack says:

      Hey, I was in the area that day, sure messed up my trip to the sporting goods store on my UNION break.

      1. karlabobarla says:

        This is my friend’s LIFE you are mocking. Defend your politics elsewhere

      2. Michaela says:

        Thats is selfish and gross! How can you even talk like that?

  2. angus says:

    Could it be a medical condition not alcohol that caused the accident?

    1. The smell of alcohol.... says:

      anythings possible but the comments have been “investigating whether alcohol” so I suspect another Amy Senser like deal. Charges likely to follow or so I hear.
      And I hope the family has the biggest and nastiest personal injury dudes in the USA …. this family has been thru hell

      1. Anonymous says:

        If charges are filed, it would be an outrage. I have connections with those involved and am aware that the driver in question was suffering from side effects of medication for an outstanding medical condition. There are two sides to this, both are unfortunate and my thoughts go out to everyone involved.

        1. Raoul Duc says:

          It is unfortunate for all involved. Just curiouis, what is an “outstanding medical condition.”

          1. Anonymous says:

            I don’t want to be too specific with details.

        2. Dave says:

          A person suffering from the side effects of medication, to the extent of not being able to control the vehicle, should not be driving. It is a sad situation for both parties, but the onus is on the driver of the vehicle to decide not to drive.

          1. Anonymous says:

            Again, there are details here that aren’t being released yet but it wasn’t a case of “I’m going to go driving even though I can’t.”

        3. Wasn't Me says:

          If that is true he should not have been driving.

        4. eh says:

          It would be an outrage?! oh please, This innocent woman had to leave her kids to grow up alone, and your worried about them investigating? A beer or two can do a number on someone mixed with medication. If it was an accident, then he shouldn’t have anything to worry about except the aftermath.

          1. Anonymous says:

            You people don’t have half a heart to look at this like it was anything but a drunk driving incident. No alcohol was involved.

            1. some guy. says:

              Was there drugs involved? Prescription or not?

            2. Moi says:

              So, are you still defending this person who was just confirmed to be DRIVING DRUNK!!!

            3. michelle says:

              Wrong! BAL .169; empty vodka bottle in the car.

            4. Diane says:

              A BAC of .169% and an open bottle and there was no alcohol involved? You can’t be serious. Open your eyes and see the light of day!

            5. Too Sad says:

              Apparently you were very wrong. I guess you don’t know Ms. Hamm as well as you thought. She obviously has a drinking problem.

        5. Some guy. says:

          So if someone is driving around intoxicated on medications it is supposed to relieve them of any liability?

          It’s like saying someone is having a reaction to Oxycontin, but its alright to run people over with a car because it was a reaction to a drug……..Rather than just pull over or not get into their vehicle in the first place.

  3. mel says:

    Poor kids lost both of their parents in one year. So awful.

  4. saddened says:

    Ann was such a beautiful woman, with a heart of gold. She would have done anything for anyone if it meant it would make their life a bit easier. I was blessed with knowing her and her husband and they made a huge impact on my life. This is heartbreaking for their family and friends and I hope justice is served in this case. I don’t care if it was prescription drugs, street drugs, alcohol. OBVIOUSLY this person should not have been behind the wheel. If it was a case of a bad drug interaction this person should have been responsible enough to know they should not be driving a vehicle. Now because of their actions two children are left to grieve the loss of their only parent. It just sickens me.

  5. tally2010 says:

    I am gonna wait and see what the toxicology reports say. Ann’s daughter is my son’s close friend, I feel really bad that she and her brother lost both parents in 4 months. if this is true “suffering from side effects of medication for an outstanding medical condition” if the side effects say not to operate a motor vehicle while taking this medication, then I hope the family takes action against the driver. How would it be different then drinking and driving?

    1. Anonymous says:

      From my understanding, it was a freak occurrence. No such problem had occurred in the past. Something just went wrong. As you suggest though, the toxicology report and any following reports should hopefully set the story straight. I just hate seeing people getting judged for things that may not be in their control. I wouldn’t pursue a driver who had the sudden onset of a heart attack.

      1. michelle says:

        Still saying it was a ‘freak occurence? BAL of 0.169 & an empty bottle of vodka (reported on Kare11) in the vehicle????

      2. tally2010 says:

        How is a BCA .169 and a empty vodka bottle in the car a freak occurrence? (this has been reported on several news sources)

  6. manix67 says:

    that is so pathetic

  7. karlabobarla says:

    Apparently you don’t know what these children have endured like we have. This is NOT part of God’s plan. This is a world gone mad.

  8. KP says:

    This is so sad from all angles. I don’t know the situation with the driver, whether is was a reaction to something or not, but wouldn’t you pull over if you had a reaction to something and became impaired? Heart attack, stroke, diabetic reaction, all those things would make a person unable to react. But medication? I’m not so sure.

    My heart goes out to Ann’s whole family. My heart also goes out to the driver who has to live with this result the rest of her life.

    I was at the accident site and witness the hysteria of Ann’s sister. I cannot fathom her pain – it was so raw. I hope that family can heal from this.

  9. Ryan says:

    knew Ann and her children and because of the selfish acts of one person, two thirteen year old children are now orphaned. I hope that Mrs. Hamm has the decency to stand up and court and say ” I know I took Mrs. Blake’s life, but it was worth it because I was really having a great time.”. People need to understand how self centered of an act drunk driving is. You are putting your own personal enjoyment over the safety of the public.

  10. Michaela says:

    My husband saw this whole thing happen! He talks about it over and over and trys to understand how something like this could occur. Seeing something like this, happen right in front of you, is tramatizing! I haven’t a clue how the living sister is healing mentally, but I wish her the best.
    I have tried to find updates on the toxicology reports and have found nothing.
    My heart goes out to all families involved. Ann sounds like she was one amazing person and God called her home. Words can not express how sad I am for these children. I am thankful that they have the support system that is there for them.

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