A pregnant mother of three was killed Tuesday after a 100-pound wheel hub came loose from a semitrailer on Interstate 80 near Joliet, Illinois and smashed into her windshield.

Due to Deliver in 10 Days

Melinda Cullen, 38, of Coal City, was on her way home from work at the time of the accident. She was due to deliver her baby, a son named Jaxson, in ten days.

At about 2:20 p.m., the semitrailer was headed east on I-80 when a wheel hub came off the trailer’s rear axle near Rowell Avenue and crossed over into the westbound lanes of traffic, according to Illinois State Police. The lost hub then collided with the windshield of Cullen’s SUV as it headed west, killing her at the wheel, state police said.


Cullen was rushed to the hospital, where she and her unborn son were pronounced dead.

Cullen is survived by her husband, Dave Cullen, and three daughters, ages 8, 5 and 15 months.

Semi Driver Charged

The driver of the semi truck was Antanas Sereiva, 59, of Bolingbrook, Illinois.

Sereive has been charged with a violation of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Act for having unsafe equipment, according to Police. Sereive has no previous record of federal violations.