The girlfriend of a former University of Miami football player who was killed in a violent wreck says she was on the phone with him at the time of the crash.
JoJo Nicolas' girlfriend Mimi Connor spoke exclusively with NBC 6 about being on the phone with Nicolas as his car crashed head-on into a semi-truck while leaving Miami Beach Tuesday.
"I heard the phone drop and I heard ... I don't know what I heard, but I heard something. I'm trying not to cry right now," she said.
Connor said it was a phone call she would never forget.
"Two seconds, like I blinked, then I heard it. Like, wait, 'Hello, Jo, hello?' and he just wasn't there," Connor said.
Nicolas, a four-year letter winner as a defensive back for the Hurricanes from 2007 to 2011, was leaving Miami Beach on Interstate 395 after an early birthday celebration. He would have turned 25 Monday.
When his Lexus slammed into the rear of the 18-wheeler, the hood of his car was shredded apart. Rescuers had to pry open the roof and pull the seat back to rush him to Ryder Trauma Center.
“My heart just fell because he didn’t hang up the phone," Connor said. "That wasn’t him."
Connor said she was at his bedside while his condition fluctuated at Ryder Trauma Center.
“We get to him and we’re asking can we please get to the back? Can we please see him because we just left him and they said he was OK," she said.
But the aspiring NFL player and father died Wednesday.
"We get back there and he’s not OK," she said. "He’s gone and his body is just laying there and before they had him sitting up in the chair and back there he was just laying down. Everybody was like don’t cry, don’t cry, but he’s dead.”
Now Connor, who envisioned her whole future with Nicolas, has to work through her grief before she can begin to move on.
“It’s no more. It’s no more, and it’s cold. It’s like just when he flat-lined, everything flat-lined for me,” she said. “Because you know, yeah, he was a son, he was this, he was a friend, he was a brother – but to me he was just so different.”
As for the investigation, police said they are looking into everything including speed, alcohol and cell phone use. The investigation could take up to 30 days.
A memorial fund for Nicolas has been set up here. The money raised will go toward funeral expenses and to help in raising his newborn son.