Fredzania " Zanie" Thompson, a 19-year-old mother-to-be, was killed by a passing train March 10. Thompson, a promising student with several athletic scholarships, was in the middle of a photo shoot with a friend when she was killed. She was building her modeling portfolio.
Witnesses told police that Thompson was posing for a photo where two sets of train tracks meet. One set belonged to BNSF and the other to Union Pacific.
According to witness testimony, Thompson was waiting between the two sets of tracks, watching for an oncoming train on the BNSF side with her back to the Union Pacific track. When the BNSF train came, she tried to cross the Union Pacific tracks to avoid the BNSF train, and was instead struck by the oncoming Union Pacific train.
Her friend rushed her to the local hospital where she was pronounced dead. She would have turned 20 on March 13, just three days after her death.
She leaves behind her fiance Darnell Chatman, 25, father of one. According to The Eagle, Thompson called Chatman two weeks ago to break the good news.
"She said, 'You're going to be a dad again," said Chatman.
Thompson was very close to Chatman's 7-year-old son, who has been deeply affected by Thompson's death. The child was set to become Thompson's stepson, and Thompson was the boy's primary mother figure.
"He woke up crying this morning," said Chatman to The Eagle. "He thought [her death] was a dream."
Thompson is remembered by her mother, her fiance, and her loving friends. A memorial has been created on Facebook to celebrate her life and mourn her passing. Her five younger brothers and sisters looked up to the young woman as a role model.
Thompson's mother and fiance both told The Eagle that she was kind, welcoming, and loved her friends.
"Zanie had the most beautiful smile," said Chatman to The Eagle. "I believe she would want everyone to know what a kind and caring person she is."
Thompson chose to attend Blinn College in Bryan, Texas, but put off attending to pursue a dream that she'd had since she was a child. The photos she was taking at the time of her death were supposed to become the basis of her portfolio.
The featured photo, taken just prior to the accident, was shared by Thompson's family. It shows her smiling confidently, a woman ready to take on the career of her dreams.
Her funeral will be held on Saturday in Navasota.