20-year-old road rage victim was mom who 'could light up the world just walking into the room'

LYNNWOOD, Wash. -- The family of a Lynnwood woman is begging for the public's help.

They're hoping witnesses can provide police with details about a road rage incident that turned deadly along I-5 near Roanoke Street in Seattle.

The Washington State Patrol says the road rage incident ended in a crash that killed 20-year-old Taylor Hulsey early Sunday morning.

Police are still trying to figure out who is responsible.

Now, 11 days before Christmas,  Hulsey's friends and family must plan her funeral.

"It's unsettling because we know she wants to be here," said high school friend Keani Kukahiko, choking back tears. "I don't feel like we'll ever get closure no matter what it is ... she was so young."

Behind the polished pose and the golden smile, the 20-year-old mom had overcome so many obstacles.

"Unfortunately, her life had challenges in it and not to her own making," said relative Mike Lillie.

Lillie and his wife opened their home to Hulsey and her 2 1/2-year-old son almost two years ago.

"I felt like she was always fighting a battle that was never settled until she came here and was actually at peace," said Kukahiko.

The stability--helping her get back on her feet.

Mike and his wife both received several texts from her just prior to her death, after her SUV crashed along I-5--something police say is a case of road rage.

Witnesses told police the driver of a red Dodge Ram was involved in the road rage incident and drove off after Taylor's car crashed, killing her and injuring her passenger.

Taylor's personality--quite the opposite of rage. Making her sudden death so much more difficult for those who knew her.

"She could light up the world just walking into the room. She was such an outgoing person," said Kukahiko. "All she talked about was living life and being in her prime."

Hulsey recently completed her GED and had just received her cosmetology license.

Her goal was to provide for her son and one day open her own salon.

"It's just been amazing," said Lillie. "Then to see her thrive into all these accomplishments, you know driver's license, didn't have to take the bus anymore."

Taylor would've started a new job the day after she died -- selling the shoes she's always obsessed over.

Now her friends say they'll remember her smile and her selfies.

"She was the definition of being just extra," laughed Kalani McArthur, a friend since middle school.

"She just wanted to be in the town all the time or just be next to the sunset, just walking in the light," said Kukahiko.

They plan to shed that light on her son and make sure he knows just how much she loved him.

Detectives are asking for anyone with information in reference to a Dodge Ram involved in the road rage incident or the events leading up to this tragic incident to contact Detective Medeiros at (425) 401-7719 or by email at ruth.medeiros@wsp.wa.gov.