Petara Cordero was struck by an oncoming vehicle after the tire blew out on the car she and Chris Smith were driving

By Ashley Boucher
September 11, 2019 08:19 PM
(L-R) Petara Cordero and Chris Smith
Petara Cordero/Instagram

Cleveland Browns defensive end Chris Smith’s girlfriend, Petara Cordero, is dead after a tragic chain of events.

The 26-year-old was struck by a car and killed in front of her NFL player boyfriend on Wednesday morning, the team said in a statement.

Cordero’s death comes just weeks after she and Smith welcomed daughter Haven Harris Smith.

Cordero was a passenger in Smith’s Lamborghini when a tire blew out, causing their vehicle to swerve and hit a median on I-90 West in Cleveland, according to the Browns’ statement.

Cordero got out of the car uninjured, only to be struck by an oncoming Mazda, local station News 5 reports.

After being taken to Cleveland Clinic Fairview Hospital, Cordero was pronounced dead.

The driver of the Mazda admitted to drinking before the accident, and a toxicology report is pending, Cleveland police told CNN. Smith was not impaired, both the Browns’ statement and CNN reported.

Cordero’s sudden and tragic death comes less than a month after she gave birth to their daughter Haven.

Smith and Cordero announced their little girl’s arrival on social media.

On August 27, Smith shared photos of the new mom and baby, writing in the caption, “I’m so thankful to have another beautiful gift in this world my daughter Haven Harris Smith. You are such a blessing to me and your mother!! Love you Petara and Baby Haven❤️❤️❤️.”

Cordero also shared photographs of their new addition on Instagram, writing, “This little girl has filled my heart with so much joy and love !! I’m so thankful that God chose me to be her mommy!! So excited for this life journey with you!!! Haven Harris Smith.”

Chris Smith
Diamond Images/Getty Images

Just days before her death, the new mom posted a photograph of Smith kissing her on the forehead.

“This a forever thing, I love you through everything,” she wrote.

On her 26th birthday in July, Cordero told her social media followers that she thanked God for giving her life she always prayed for.

“Always prayed to God for true happiness and unconditional love and here I am on my 26th birthday with a man that loves me a great deal, family and friends that mean the world to me all while waiting on my beautiful daughter Haven to arrive. Thank you God, you’re showing out.”

Browns team owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam offered words of support for Smith, who will be excused from team activities to grieve “as he sees best fit.”

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“Words cannot describe the sorrow we feel for Chris following the loss of his girlfriend, Petara. Our entire organization mourns with Chris, his family and the Cordero family,” the Haslam’s statement said. “We will do everything possible to offer them our support, comfort and any resources in this most difficult time.”

The team was notified of the tragedy in a team meeting on Wednesday morning, and head coach Freddie Kitchens has visited Smith at his house, the Browns said.