Skip to main content

Mom who lost husband, daughter and unborn son in crash is now dead


A mother seriously injured in a Monday crash that claimed the lives of her husband, 1-year-old daughter and unborn child has died.

Elizabeth Calderara, a 26-year-old from Cannon Falls, was only being kept alive by the aid of life support.

Her mother, Suzanne Brantly, announced that Elizabeth was declared brain dead.

"Her heart is still beating and she is still on a ventilator in order to keep her heart and organs alive until the surgeons of the organ recipients are able to arrive," her mom said on Thursday. "Because her brain stopped before her heart, she will be able to gift her whole heart to someone in need instead of just her heart valves."

The crash occurred on Monday after Elizabeth's husband Jason Calderara began to pass a vehicle on a two-way highway in Dakota County, the Star Tribune reported.

He cut back at the last second, but it caused an oncoming minivan to drive onto the shoulder, which in turn caused a following semitrailer truck to brake and jackknife, crashing into the Calderaras’ vehicle.

Jason and their 1-year-old daughter Melody died in the crash and their unborn son died in the hospital.

A memorial service for the family will be held on Sunday afternoon in Prior Lake.

Next Up

Karl-Anthony Towns

Post Bucks win, KAT says “I play with f****** passion”

Towns was asked how he controls his emotions on the court.

D'Angelo Russell

Wolves rebound with statement win against Bucks

D'Angelo Russell and the Timberwolves bounced back with a win over the defending champs.

Screen Shot 2021-10-27 at 7.08.20 PM

Train carrying ethanol derails in southern Minnesota

The State Fire Marshal has sent in experts to help with the situation.


Motorcyclist dies a month after striking deer in Minnesota

The crash happened north of Mankato near the small town of Norseland.

fire pixabay stock

House explosion kills 1, severely injures another

Authorities described the home as "completely destroyed."

Kotyza-Witthuhn screengrab

Watch: MN lawmaker 'attacked' by giggling child during live hearing

This has to be the most adorable moment ever from a Commerce Finance and Policy Committee hearing, right?

Sloane Martin

Sloane Martin leaving WCCO Radio for bigger role with Big Ten Network

Martin has been a staple at WCCO Radio since Election Day 2016.

Flickr - Xcel Energy truck - Tony Webster

Xcel Energy wants to raise MN customers' electricity rates

If approved, rates go up by an average of $18.50 a month for customers.

Screen Shot 2021-10-27 at 1.11.05 PM

MPD chief 'confident' officers will still show up after Question 2 vote

Arradondo held a press conference Wednesday in which he urged for a 'No' vote.

J R Jones - Anoka County Jail 2021.10.16 - Resize crop

Charges: Driver in fatal hit-and-run said he thought he hit dog or sign

The crash killed a 56-year-old Blaine woman who had been out walking her dog.

vaccine, covid

Here is Minnesota's plan to vaccinate kids 5-11 against COVID-19

The plan includes hosting vaccination clinics at schools across the state.

Mounds View PD missing 12yo Riddley

12-year-old Twin Cities boy has been missing for 4 days

Police are asking for the public's help locating the child,


Mom and son injured in Kansas RV crash return to Minnesota

Pauline Kerber of Jordan was released from the hospital Tuesday. Her 17-year-old son is being transferred to a Minnesota hospital. Five of the 18 family members died when their motor home crashed and plunged into a ravine April 1. The cause of the accident remains under investigation.