ELYRIA — To some, she was known as “Lollipop” — an homage to her bright red hair — to others simply “Kramer.” No matter what she was called, Kelly Kramer was well loved.
On Monday evening, Kramer’s friends and family came en masse to her alma mater, Elyria Catholic High School, to honor the 25-year-old North Ridgeville native who was killed in a one-car crash on Interstate 90 Sunday night.
“She was the best friend you could have,” said Jackie Nicole, one of Kramer’s closest friends, looking around the large group of people who joined with candles and prayer outside the high school Monday. “This shows what a great person she was.”
Kramer was driving eastbound on I-90 around Columbia Road about 11:45 p.m. Sunday when she crashed her 2012 Ford, going off the eastbound side of the road and into a ditch, according to Westlake police Capt. Guy Turner. Kramer’s car caught fire and she was pronounced dead at the scene. Police are still investigating the cause of the crash.
To her friends — many of whom remained close with Kramer through high school and later through college at University of Toledo — and family, it was a difficult blow.
“She was the best daughter a mother could ask for,” said Kramer’s mother, Connie Kramer. “I don’t know how I’ll live without her.”
Kramer graduated with a double major from University of Toledo and got a job working for Sherman Williams, where she was promoted to a managerial position.
Though she moved to Lakewood after college, Kramer remained close with her family, often taking care of her niece and even helping to paint her older brother’s house, said her father, Dale Kramer.
Danielle Mueller, who grew up across the street from Kramer in North Ridgeville, said the two women have been friends their entire lives.
“I met her when I was first born,” Mueller said, adding that she always knew Kramer as a vibrant person. “She absolutely loved her life.”
Sarah St. Marie, another close friend of Kramer’s from high school, said she remembers Kramer the same way — always lively. The women first met in middle school and “hit it off right away,” St. Marie said, adding that they attended frequent country music concerts together. “Everything was a constant party. She just made you feel like life was a celebration.”
Kramer made the same impression on her college friends. Devin Jarvis said since she met Kramer just before attending Toledo, she, Kramer and their close friend Nicole were inseparable. The three even won an award through their sorority at Toledo for always sticking together.
“She brightened up everyone around her. She made you want to be a better person,” Jarvis said.