AUGUSTA — A local woman hit late last week by a Jeep as she walked on the sidewalk along North Belfast Avenue continued to cling to life Monday in a Portland hospital.

Ruth Epperson, 81, was expected to undergo surgery Monday at Maine Medical Center, where she was listed in critical condition.

“It was a little better (Sunday), but we’re a long way from out of the woods,” said her brother Edwin Giggie, of Madison.

Epperson was taken to Portland by a LifeFlight helicopter Friday afternoon after she was hit by a 1999 Jeep Cherokee. The driver of the sport-utility vehicle, Joshua Erskine, 24, of Windsor, has not been charged, according to Augusta police Sgt. Christopher Shaw.

The crash happened about 3:30 p.m. as Erskine was driving east on North Belfast Avenue. He lost control of his vehicle a half-mile east of the Bangor Street intersection.

The Jeep swerved across the westbound lane and hit a parked car belonging to Kathleen Greene, 59. The car was parked in the driveway of Greene’s home, Shaw said.

Erskine’s Jeep caromed off Greene’s car and plowed into Epperson, who was walking on the sidewalk.

Epperson’s sister Neva Moody, of Monroe, said her sister enjoys being outside.

“She walked several miles a day,” Moody said.

Epperson and her husband, Clyde, celebrated their 56th wedding anniversary on Jan. 1. Clyde has been at his wife’s side since the accident happened, Giggie said.

Clyde and Ruth Epperson have two children, two grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Epperson is a member of the Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Augusta, where she is involved with a quilting group.

Moody last saw her sister two weeks ago.

“She loved her gardening, loved her church, loved her quilting,” Moody said. “She’s a very outgoing sister.”

Moody said she has not heard what might have caused the accident.

Giggie, 86, said he was the oldest of seven children. Epperson is one of the kindest in the group, he said.

“She just likes life,” he said.

Giggie said two of his siblings already have died.

“I feel like I’m being cheated,” he said. “I’m praying she’s going to make it.”

Craig Crosby — 621-5642

[email protected]

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