Jasmine Fajemisin of Silver Spring was the type of friend who stayed in contact with people for years.
Toni Fajemisin of Silver Spring said her 30-year-old daughter was very outgoing — a people person — who always had a beautiful smile on her face.
When she found out her daughter was involved in a car accident with two of her closest friends — Nicole and Rosa Benlizar — on Christmas Eve, Toni Fajemisin remembered calling all of the hospitals to find out where she was. She got a call from Suburban Hospital saying Jasmine was there and in critical condition.
“My heart kind of stopped in my throat,” Toni Fajemisin said.
When she arrived at the hospital, a state trooper and a nurse met her at the door and escorted her to a room to tell her the news that Jasmine had died.
“On the way there, I just was preparing myself that maybe they were going to say she was crippled or paralyzed,” Toni Fajemisin said. “I was preparing myself for that kind of news, but not that my only daughter was gone.”
When Toni Fajemisin walked in to identify her daughter, she was “numb” and in total “disbelief.”
She said while grieving with family, Rosa Benlizar, who was driving the car Jasmine was riding in, walked into the hospital waiting room. She was there to identify her son, Antony, 17, who also died in the accident.
Rosa Benlizar’s mother, Florentina Gonzalez, died in Inova Hospital on Jan. 1 from complications related to the crash.
“We just hugged and tried to comfort each other. We were all in total shock,” Toni Fajemisin said.
She said she does not blame Rosa for what happened that day. “I want her to have a clear conscience. ... Jasmine was her friend. She was happy. They were like sisters.”
A funeral service was conducted for Jasmine on Jan. 4 at Mount Jezreel Baptist Church on University Boulevard in Silver Spring and she was laid to rest at Gate of Heaven Cemetery in Aspen Hill.
Jasmine had just started her job as a receptionist at First Choice in downtown Silver Spring two weeks prior to the accident.
Toni Fajemisin said Jasmine’s 14-year-old son, Antonio, had a birthday less than a week before the accident. She said Jasmine threw him a birthday dinner with all of his favorite foods, and the Benlizar family was there for the dinner — including Jasmine’s cat, Bella, and her dog, Serena.
She said Jasmine had the innate ability to make people feel comfortable, and her house was always open to her friends.
Chesa Harris, 31, of Silver Spring said she and Jasmine had been best friends since she was 8 years old. Harris, who is Antonio’s godmother, said she often thinks about Jasmine Fajemisin and will call her phone or text her.
“Even though I know she’s not there, I do it anyway,” Harris said. “I don’t think any of our lives will ever be the same anymore.