Faith a cornerstone to lean on for mother of 3-year-old killed i - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina |

Faith a cornerstone to lean on for mother of 3-year-old killed in DUI accident

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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) -

It's been two months since a DUI crash in Northeast Columbia claimed the life of 3-year-old Josiah Jenkins. Since then, Emma's Law has been passed which created stricter penalties for offenders.

Josiah's mother, Latoya Jenkins, has not been able to return to work yet as a 5th grade teacher while she deals with this unimaginable loss.

In the Jenkins home sits an unopened toy from Target, a prize Josiah had just picked out that fateful Friday to celebrate his achievements at school.

"He received it for outstanding attendance and for completing all of his assignments," said Latoya.

Latoya was on her way to pick up pizza when the accident happened. "All I could see was the lights. I was saying, 'Oh God, oh God,' and I started saying, 'No,' and he hit my car," she said.

"A lot of people kept coming up saying, 'Are you okay?' No. My son is in the car."

Latoya spent the next four days in the hospital by her son's side.

"It was mixed emotions and just praying that my only child would live," said Latoya.

The vivacious little boy, who was fascinated by his mother's children's Bible App, cars, and monster trucks, whose smile was nothing short of infectious, was gone.

"The best child that I could have. I miss him being here," said Latoya. "I miss him calling me, asking for Starbucks, telling me that he loves me."

She hopes others will learn from her tragedy and make responsible decisions.

"I'm very grateful that Emma's Law was passed," said Latoya. "I do believe it will help others, benefit others, especially a lot of innocent people."

It's a daily struggle.

"Just trying to pick up the pieces and move forward," said Latoya.

But Latoya says she knows that Josiah, who, in the Bible, was a king at the young age of 8, has already left a lasting legacy.

"Although I don't understand what happened, why it happened, I just know that God is with me, so I place my trust in Him," said Latoya.

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