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Community grieves after fatal crash in Eugene on Thursday

The driver who hit and killed a Eugene man early Thursday morning was driving the wrong-way on a one-way street while attempting to flee a sheriff's deputy, Eugene Police said. Police arrested the driver Brandi Gonzales (left) and her passenger, Colby Jongeward (right). (SBG and Lane County Jail photos)

EUGENE, Ore. - Ronit Cohen is still processing her ex-husband Eran Schlesinger's death.

"It was shocking," said Cohen. "It is the last thing that you ever think that someone who was part of your life will end his life in such a tragic way."

Eugene Police say that a wrong-way driver caused a fatal crash on Washington street at approximately 12:30 a.m. on Thursday.

The driver of the car, 20-year-old Brandi Gonzalez, was fleeing from police when she crashed into Schlesinger's car, killing him at the scene.

Schlesinger was 52-years-old.


Gonzales and her passenger, 23-year-old Colby Jongeward, were booked into the Lane County Jail after hospital treatment.

Gonzales faces charges of manslaughter, as well as several others, and Jongeward is accused of interfering with police.

Cohen and Schlesinger moved from Israel to Eugene more than 27 years ago, and Eran graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in landscape architecture.

Cohen says her late ex-husband was well known around the community, and had a reputation for being friendly with a good sense of humor.

"Life will bring you all types of unexpected events," said Cohen. "You just have to go through this and like I said - keep the good memories of this person. That's what we are going to do."

Cohen says that Eran's funeral will be held sometime next week in Israel.

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