Mercer County car crash victim’s family grieving, but grateful baby survived


MERCER COUNTY, Ky. (WTVQ) – Two new parents died in a car crash in Mercer County Saturday night, but sheriff’s deputies were able to rescue the nearly 6-month-old baby from the backseat.

The Mercer County Coroner’s Office says 25-year-old Christa Murphy and her boyfriend, 21-year-old Gregory Sparks, died from blunt force trauma in the wreck on Mackville Road and Old Lewis Road around 11 p.m.

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Taylor Lewis is Murphy’s half sister by blood, but says Murphy was more like her rock, always there to lean on.

Lewis had just seen Murphy a few hours before the crash on Saturday.

“I told her that I loved her and that I’d see her later…and five hours later she’s gone,” she said.

The pain, heartbreaking to hear.

“There’s really no worse feeling than knowing your sister’s gone,” she said.

The silver lining of the crash? 5-month-old Emori Sparks made it out alive.

Mercer County Sheriff’s Deputy David Prather was one of the first responders at the crash. He said she had to be cut out of her seat.

“That was probably the best sound in the world was to hear that baby gasp,” he said.

Prather and fellow Deputy Sean Brown say they’ll never forget that night, seeing Emori turning blue.

Lewis says no one can replace Emori’s parents, but they’ll make sure she knows how much she’s loved.

“But one thing I can really focus myself now is trying trying to do everything that we can to  make Emori more happy and to know that her parents loved her,” she said. “And know that even though they’re gone, they’re still here with her.”

Family friend, Katrina Sexton is helping organize donations for the family.

Monetary donations to help with funeral costs for the parents, with anything left over going towards an account on Emori’s behalf, can be donated via Alexander and Royalty Funeral Home.

Sexton says Emori’s immediate needs have been met, but she’s a growing girl, so there’s always bigger sizes she will grow into.

Sexton posted this list on Facebook:

Baby items:
Girls clothes 6 months and up for later use
Diapers size 2 and up & wipes
Platex bottles
Teething toys
Lotions, baby wash, etc.

Donations can be dropped off at Southside Christian Church located at 1950 Danville Rd. Monday through Thursday 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.


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Monica Harkins joined the ABC 36 News team in June 2019 as a Multimedia journalist and Anchor/Producer. She’s born and raised in Austin, Texas and headed “North,” as she calls it, to study broadcast journalism and business at the University of Missouri. While at Mizzou she anchored and reported for KOMU 8 News, an NBC affiliate in Columbia, Missouri all four years. During her childhood she played almost every sport, but they always called her “Hollywood” for her love of theatre. In high school, she realized her excitement for theatre and performing was only a small piece of the puzzle. It’s story telling that’s her passion. She’s especially passionate about social media and creative platforms to tell stories. Her most recent experiment is being a FAA certified drone pilot. As a proud Texan she says she’s made of country music, Southern hospitality and Sweet Tea. When she’s not at work you can find her trying new recipes, listening to crime podcasts, reading the latest romance novel or rockin’ out to live music with friends. She says she’s only a tweet or Facebook message away, so say hi and send her the latest on your community. @MonicaHarkinstv or