Mother of baby rescued from fiery Interstate Bridge crash: 'She' - KPTV - FOX 12

Mother of baby rescued from fiery Interstate Bridge crash: 'She's the same smiley baby'

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Nayeli Navarro (Source: KPTV) Nayeli Navarro (Source: KPTV)
Photo: ODOT Photo: ODOT

Her daughter was pulled from a burning car after an early morning crash on the Interstate Bridge. Now, Molly Wallach wants to set the record straight about what happened early Thursday morning.

Wallach invited FOX 12 to meet her and her 18-month-old daughter Nayeli Navarro at Randall Children’s Hospital. 

Grinning from ear to ear, with her tight pin curls bouncing, Nayeli ran around the hospital room as if nothing had happened. Wallach said it’s a miracle after the mini-van the girl was in crashed into a construction truck and caught on fire.
“She seems okay. She’s a little off balance, but other than that, she’s the same smiley baby.” Wallach said. 
Witnesses at the crash scene said the baby’s mother was driving, but Wallach said that was not the case. 

Early Thursday morning, Wallach said she and a couple of her relatives were at a friend’s house and Nayeli was awake and fussy. Wallach went out to her relative’s car and put Nayeli in her car seat while she looked for a bottle. Then Wallach said she and her relatives – who she claims had been drinking – started fighting, leading to them pushing her away and driving off with Nayeli in the car.

Wallach went to her relative’s house, but no one was there so she called her mother and police.
“My mom had mentioned there was a crash and that’s why it took her so long to get to me.” Wallach said, looking at her daughter, “We had no idea it was her.”
FOX 12 interviewed Chad Worthington shortly after the crash. He was in a construction flagging truck when the van hit him. He said one woman got out and walked away from the scene. He pulled an older woman and Nayeli out and the van exploded moments later.
Wallach said she hopes to hug Worthington and thank him in person very soon. She also hopes her relatives own up to their mistakes and face appropriate consequences.
“It wasn’t intentional, but regardless, I wasn’t aware of anything. All I know is that they took my daughter," she said. 
Portland police haven't released many details about the case, but they said it is being investigated by hit-and-run detectives.

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