26-year-old mother was walking home at time of hit-and-run that killed her

A 26-year-old woman was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Van Buren Township overnight.

Although police were able to track down the suspect and take him into custody, Natia Hardy's family is dealing with the devastating shock of her loss.

"You kept going and left her on the side of the road to die like an animal," said her adopted mother Lizz Fizer.

Hardy was killed early Wednesday as she was walking home. Investigators tell Fox 2 that it was another driver that noticed Natia’s body on the north service drive of I-94 between Rawsonville and Beck roads just after 12:30 a.m.

"You didn’t stop to see," Fizer said. "Maybe you could’ve saved her life."

Natia’s adopted mother shared recent pictures of her with her daughter Ava, and her biological mother, who recently got married.

Fizer says Hardy was taking steps to become a nurse.

"I literally cannot breath," she said. "I feel like I'm in the middle of a nightmare that I cannot wake up from."

Fizer says Natia was coming back from seeing friends nearby her home.

Natia Hardy was pronounced dead at the scene. The police chief of Van Buren Township says about six hours later the 61-year-old driver who allegedly hit Natia was pulled over during a traffic stop and arrested.

"His car had been damaged that’s why they were able to find him," Fizer said. "We know (he) didn’t do it on purpose maybe you weren’t paying attention, texting and driving I don’t know but that’s the problem, you left the scene."

As the family tries to process this tragedy they’re also working on how to deliver this news to Natia’s little girl.

"So how are we supposed to explain to a 5-year-old that her mother is never coming back home," Fizer said. "How do we do that?"

Natia’s family hopes that others learn from their heartache.

"Pay attention," Fizer said. "And if you do hit something - at least stop."

Natia Hardy

Natia Hardy